From guest blogger, Tessa.
I’ve had a hard time deciding how I feel about compulsory voting. Voter turnout in the United States has been extremely low, around 60% in the last few years, because the likelihood that one a single vote influences the outcome of an election is negligible. See suggest that compulsory voting will increase the legitimacy of the democratic government. I don’t necessarily believe that there will be market failure if we do not implement this policy, but I do think it could be beneficial. Because there is such a low voter turnout, there would be less margin of error in counting machines (such as the event in 2000, where the error exceeded the margin of victory for Bush). See also foresees that the electorate would be more representative of all citizens, since the sample is so skewed right now (racially and socio-economically). If people were forced to vote, they would be more inclined to become more informed about the election and candidates. If they are legally required to take time out of their day to vote, they might as well support someone who shares the same ideals and morals. Additionally, this policy would help reduce the role of money in politics and would also force politicians to change their campaign methods. Finally, politicians would have to shift their focus to different sets of issues because there will be new types of voters. Overall, I think this compulsory voting policy would be beneficial, but also doubtful that it will ever be implemented.