A polemic applauding Democratic support of the Dorrite cause in Rhode Island, 1844

The Dorr Rebellion for Voting Rights

In 1842, an attempt to enfranchise all men in Rhode Island resulted in two governors, two constitutions and what we now know as the Dorr Rebellion.
A Man And Woman Showing Ink-Marked Finger And Voter Card in Calcutta, India

Why Vote? Lessons from Indian Villages

The voters one scholar studied didn't necessarily think they would benefit materially from being on the winning side. But turnout was over 90 percent.
"I Voted" stickers

Voting in American Politics: A Syllabus

From battles to expand the franchise to the mysteries of turnout, voting is one of the most important things to understand about U.S. politics.
Voters dropping their voting slips into the ballot box.

Why Do We Vote by Secret Ballot?

Election days used to be raucous affairs, with individual votes sometimes cast orally for all to hear.
Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, 1941

Suppressing Native American Voters

South Dakota has been called "the Mississippi of the North" for its long history of making voting hard for Native Americans.
A town hall event in Iowa.

Just How Unrepresentative Are the Iowa Caucuses?

There's no denying the whiteness of the state. But scholars cite other qualities that make Iowa more like the rest of the country.
Larry Lessig

Lawrence Lessig: How to Repair Our Democracy

Law professor and one-time presidential hopeful Lawrence Lessig on campaign finance, gerrymandering, and the electoral college.
An illustration of hands around a ballot box

Enfranchisement Is the Only Route to Security

In our final security studies column, our columnist posits that security as a permanent mode of government is actually making Americans less secure.
"I Voted" stickers

How to Get People to Vote

In United States midterm elections, it is common for as few as 40% of eligible adults to vote. Why it matters, and some possible solutions.
Portrait young couple at voter polling place

The Case for Lowering the Voting Age

If the standard we hold for who can vote is the consent of the governed, why shouldn’t children be included?