By Manjot Mashiana, OMS-IV, William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine
“We do not have government by the majority. We have government by the majority who participate.”
– Thomas Jefferson
Election Day is Tuesday, November 3, 2020
This election is critically important! The world is watching us, and it is imperative that everyone in our country, medical students included, participate and vote. To make sure you have all of the information you need regarding registration deadlines, mail-in voting, early voting, and more, I recommend that you visit your state or local election website. This will be a great resource in finding important information such as election deadlines, voting requirements, ballot details, and other materials. You can also contact your local election office for answers to specific questions about upcoming deadlines, eligibility and identification requirements, and voting options.
Make Sure You’re Registered
The first step to voting is making sure you are registered. You can check your registration status online, and if you are not registered, take a few minutes to register to vote today. With the election quickly approaching, make sure you can cast your ballot by registering as soon as possible.
As future physicians, in line with the second part of the osteopathic oath, “I will be ever vigilant in aiding in the general welfare of the community,” it is imperative that all members with the right to vote, go out and vote. If you happen to have lost your right to vote, you may be eligible to reinstate your right to vote. If it’s too late to do so in this election, reinstate your right to vote for the next election.
Absentee or Mail-In Voting
Many states allow mail-in voting for college students living outside of their registered county or state. Make sure to take advantage of this opportunity if you’re a student living somewhere other than your registered location. You can visit your state or local election website for more information on absentee voting rules.
If you plan to vote by mail this election as a safety precaution due to COVID-19, your state or local election website will also be a helpful resource to you in determining whether you need to request a mail-in ballot (some states are automatically sending them to all registered voters), what the deadlines are for voting by mail (both for requesting and returning ballots), how to track your mail-in ballot, and more.
The websites below also have helpful information and resources that may prove useful as you make your voting plan for this year:
With so much at stake, I’m calling on my medical student colleagues to commit to voting in this election. The outcomes will have an impact on our education, our patients, and our future. Make your voice heard and make sure you vote!
The views and opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and do not imply endorsement by AACOM.