Hawaii needs automatic voter registration. Gov. David Ige should sign Senate Bill 159 into law.
The pandemic has shown the life-and-death difference local and national elected officials can have on our lives. But on average, the young people I meet as a community college instructor are completely alienated from electoral politics. Even (sometimes especially) politically conscious millennials and Gen-Zers don’t vote.
The historically high turnout for the 2020 election must be maintained and increased.
People under 40 don’t seem to think voting counts. A quarter of millennial respondents to a 2017 study agreed that “choosing leaders through free elections is unimportant.” Forty-six percent of 18-29-year olds would rather be governed by unelected experts than elected officials.
SB 159 improves Hawaii’s civic health by easing barriers to voter registration for people, including the young, and updates our voter rolls, increasing election integrity, ensuring our vote-by-mail ballots will get to young people for them to vote.
Windward Community College instructor