Week 5- Discussion

Voter and Voter Turnout

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Prepare: Prior to completing this discussion question, review Chapters 10, 11, and 12 in American Government and review Week Five Instructor Guidance. Also read the following articles: How Voter ID Laws Are Being Used to Disenfranchise Minorities and the Poor, Fraught with Fraud, and Proof at the Polls.

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Reflect: The U.S. has one of the lowest voter turnout rates among modern democratic political systems. One study ranks the U.S. 120th on a list of 169 nations compared on voter turnout (Pintor, Gratschew, & Sullivan, 2002). During the last decade, many initiatives have been undertaken to increase voter participation, yet concerns about the possibility of election fraud have also increased. Additionally, some political interests feel threatened by the increase in turnout among some traditionally low-turnout ethnic minorities. Several states have recently passed legislation imposing new registration and identification requirements. This has sparked debate about whether these are tactics intended to suppress turnout or to prevent fraud. Think about the media’s role in the election process and how both mass media and social media can impact the election process.

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Write: In your initial post, summarize recent developments in several states enacting voter ID laws. Analyze and describe the pros and cons on both sides of the debate about these laws. Is voter fraud a major problem for our democracy or are some groups trying to make it harder for some segments of society to vote? What impact has the media (mass and social) had in influencing public opinion regarding voter ID laws? Draw your own conclusion about the debate over voter ID laws and justify your conclusions with facts and persuasive reasoning.

Fully respond to all parts of the prompt and write your response in your own words. Your initial post must be at least 300 words. Support your position with at least two of the assigned resources required for this discussion, and/or peer reviewed scholarly sources obtained through the AU Library databases. Include APA in-text citations in the body of your post and full citations on the references list at the end. Support your position with APA citations from two or more of the assigned resources required for this discussion. Please be sure that you demonstrate understanding of these resources, integrate them into your argument, and cite them properly.

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Respond to Peers: By Day 7, respond to at least two of your classmates’ initial posts. Your peer responses should be substantive and at least 100 words each. They must demonstrate critical thinking. For example, compare your post to a classmate’s post that takes a contrary position. If you are arguing voter fraud is a major problem then contrast your argument to a classmate that argues voter ID laws are designed to suppress voting, or vice versa.

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