Tuesday marked the climax. Now we wait for the resolution … maybe we’ll know before New Year’s?
This has been an election season like no other. Even in the middle of a pandemic, people packed polling places on Tuesday. Lines wrapped around buildings before sunrise. This was the case even after many took advantage of a three-week early-voting window or the mail-in option.
All the nasty ads, social-media bickering, contentious debates and contrasts in campaign visits led up to the pinnacle moment of Americans casting vote after vote after vote.
In northeastern Kentucky, county clerks projected a 75-80% turnout (of eligible voters).
To date, the highest voter turnout rate for a presidential race was in 1876, according to history.com — 82.6% of eligible voters participated as Republican Rutherford Hayes beat Democrat Samuel Tilden during the Reconstruction Period of America (11 years after the Civil War ended).
It seems like every four years the presidential election is dubbed “the most important of our lifetime,” but this time it rings true.
Before Tuesday, 93.1 million people had already cast their votes — that already comprised 68% of total votes in 2016.
Why is voter turnout so high in 2020? Why is this election so important?
One reason is because of the aforementioned contrast. Rarely have candidates been so opposite on so many issues. Part of that is because the parties have become so polarized. Another reason is Donald Trump is such a unique figure. He has a knack for getting his followers hyped to the point where their enthusiasm is infectious among those who have the same stances.
Because middle ground is virtually non-existent, previously complacent voters have felt compelled to choose a side.
So many issues — such as COVID-19 and civil unrest — have arisen as well, pushing voters to cast a ballot.
No matter the reason behind it, it’s refreshing to see so many Americans exercise their right to vote. We will never see a 100% turnout, but whenever you see a percentage in the 60s or 70s, we should see that as a silver lining amid all the country’s division.
Now we sit back and wait on the resolution. Join us in hoping that we see an acceptance of that resolution, no matter what it is.