Thu November 14, 2013
Utah Students Petition to Change Voting System
The Utah Student Association voted unanimously this week to actively support the Count My Vote project for Utah.
Count My Vote is a statewide initiative that seeks to change the state’s voting system, hoping to move it away from a caucus system which they believe to be outdated and exclusionary.
"The USA is endorsing it because we feel really underrepresented in our caucus system right now," said Maria Millett, coordinator for the Utah Student Association.
Millett said students will see signature drives on each of the participating campuses as early as Monday.
"With the petition drive, we're encouraging everybody to sign the petition because that doesn't necessarily mean that count my vote will pass and we'll become a primary system rather than a delegate or caucus system, it just encourages students that they can get that initiative on the ballot so we can vote for it next November," said Millett.
The Utah Student Association believes low young voter turnout in Utah is caused by students believing their voices are not heard. USA hopes involving students in initiative will increase young voter participation and help the student voice be heard in the Utah electoral system.
"Utah tends to believe that whoever the Republican candidate is, is going to win because we're so densely Republican," said Millett. "I think that if we had more of a choice to decide the primary candidate, that more people would be interested in voting because it gives them more options and more ways of their voice being heard."
The Utah Student Association is comprised of ten student body presidents from Utah’s public colleges and universities and the state’s private non-profit colleges; it collectively represents over 180,000 students.