Why electoral vote projections act as a tool to discourage voters

Krist Muñoz-Malavé, Staff Writer

If you’ve been following any of the recent numbers in the media talking about the race to reach 270 votes, you’ve probably noticed that all news sources have essentially declared Hillary Clinton as a shoe-in for the Oval Office and that is an issue.

The biggest reason that this is a problem is because to declare a winner utilizing hypothetical numbers is to manipulate the people of the United States. By telling the American people that their preferred candidate has no chance of winning, it discourages those people to vote which then gives that candidate a lower chance of winning. This issue extends beyond the electoral vote projections to polls both in the presidential race and the primary.

Now, I am neither a Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton supporter, but what I am a strong advocate for is higher voter turnout and journalistic integrity.

According to BBC News, voter turnout has ranged from 48 percent to 57 percent since 1980. This is a statistic that needs to change and news reports like these don’t help. I believe that it’s important that all Americans vote, despite if my beliefs clash with theirs, because to me suppressing the voices of  those with different opinions is both undemocratic and goes against what America stands for.

I believe that while the news has an obligation to report the truth, it must not use its influence to stray people away from voting. While that might not be the intentions of many of these news sources, it’s still a responsibility that they as people have that they must tread carefully with.

Higher voter turnouts throughout the United States is a goal that we all should be striving for. However, if we ever intend to reach such a wish we must act accordingly. News outlets have to understand that its viewers won’t stand for being manipulated or tricked. They have to be aware of the fact that we the people know what their responsibilities are and we will not allow them to ignore them.

So to actively and effectively reach this goal we have to hold these networks accountable by refusing to watch their material and leaving them with a significant decrease in viewership. We have to let the issues be known to the world by spreading the word about what occurs and letting others know what they can do as well.

As a democracy, it is evident that our greatest strength is our ability to hold ourselves accountable.