It’s Election Day, and you’re sitting in the voting booth, looking at all of the names on your ballot. Unsure of who any of these people are, you choose the ones that are members of your party, or you pick a name that sounds familiar. You then cast your ballot and walk away, hoping that you chose the right candidates before going about the rest of your day.
If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. A lot of voters tend to vote without really knowing who they’re voting for. This isn’t necessarily their fault. After all, we all have lives to lead, and we can’t spend all day listening to CNN or reading the New York Times. However, in the days following up to Election Day, it’s essential to understand who is going to be on your ballot and what their positions are.
Here are a few simple ways you can research the candidates running in the next election to ensure that you’re well-informed on Election Day:
Decide which issues matter to you most
Before you can decide who to vote for, you must decide what you stand for. Is climate change a primary concern for you? Is education reform near and dear to your heart? Ask yourself which issues are the most important to you and then find candidates who agree with you on those issues.
Study their voting record
How a candidate votes in the past is an excellent way to determine how they will vote in the future. Even if a candidate has never been elected to a public office before, you can find their positions through past interviews, social media posts, and more.
Thankfully, you don’t have to do all of this yourself. There are several resources available that can provide you with the information you need in a heartbeat:
- If a candidate is currently serving in Congress, then check out their voting records at Congress.gov
- Vote411.org will provide you with a list of every person who is on your ballot, as well as their positions on the central issues concerning your district.
- Separate fact from fiction by using FactCheck.org to check candidates’ records and answers on important issues.
Follow the money
When in doubt, follow the money. A campaign’s finance history is an excellent way to figure out who a candidate’s friends are. See who has donated to a candidate’s campaign and ask yourself if those donating align with your opinions and interests.
At the Honest Ballot Association, we believe in guaranteeing fair, accurate, and accountable elections. That is why we offer electronic voting systems and machines for rent to deliver on this promise. If you are interested in using our services, call the Honest Ballot Association today at 800-541-1851.