Pol201 – week 5 – discussion 1

 

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Prepare: Prior to completing this discussion question, review Chapters 10, 11, and 12 in American Government, and review the Week 5 Instructor Guidance. Also, read the following articles: The Problem of Voter Fraud, Voter Identification Laws and the Suppression of Minority Votes Download Voter Identification Laws and the Suppression of Minority Votes, and Proof at the Polls (Links to an external site.).

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Reflect: The United States has one of the lowest voter turnout rates among modern democratic political systems. 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. How has the media’s role changed in recent years, especially considering President Trump’s stance on “fake news”?

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Write: In your initial post,

  • Describe voter ID laws in a state of your choosing. Summarize any recent developments or controversies regarding voter ID laws in the state you have chosen.
  • 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?
  • Analyze the impact that media (mass and social) has had in influencing public opinion, specifically regarding voter ID laws.
    • How was the Trump/Clinton election in 2016 impacted by voter laws and the media?

This web page provides an overview of some of the differences in Voter ID laws in the different states: Voting Laws & Requirements: Voting Methods and Options (Links to an external site.).

Your initial post must be at least 300 words. If you are citing statistics our outside resources, please list the website or the reference entry.

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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. In your peer responses, select a state different than the one you discussed and compare and contrast the voter ID laws in the state you choose for your initial post with the state your peer has chosen. Also, 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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