Why Your Vote Matters


Photo by Hailey Tolleson/Chronicle photo

The Admissions Office waits quietly at Main Campus in this photograph taken late Friday, but CNM officials said the office – and other designated voter-registration sites throughout CNM – were ready to accommodate crowds of students during a school-wide voter-registration drive Oct. 8 and 9.

  This article accompanies the previous one, “Last Pounce to Register Voters at CNM”

Story by Audrey Callaway Scherer

Our democracy and its health depend on robust voter participation, and it’s extremely important for young people and CNM students to vote so that the issues that matter to them are heard by elected officials, Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver urged this week.

It’s also important to do research ahead of time, including finding poll locations, double-checking voting registration – even if one is sure – and reading over the ballot so voters know in advance what they will be presented with. The secretary of state is New Mexico’s chief elections officer, and her office oversees the state’s entire election process.

“I encourage students and voters … to make sure there are no complications when you go in to vote,” she said.

The deadline to register to vote for this election is Tuesday, Oct. 9.

People can register, file an absentee ballot and more at NMVote.org, she said. Also, the Office of the Secretary of State publishes a voters’ guide that provides information on the ballot, including pro and con arguments for each ballot proposal.

She encouraged students and voters to look online at the League of Women Voters’ 2018 Voter Guide, noting that there are many great resources out there.

Photo courtesy of N.M. secretary of state. Maggie Toulouse Oliver, N.M. secretary of state

“I particularly think that with young people and students, it’s important to make voices heard at polls,” she said. “Unfortunately, the alternative is that the issues important to them, their needs or concerns, wouldn’t be heard by elected officials.”

Making it easy for people to register and stay updated as they keep up with their daily responsibilities is important, she said.

It’s critical that voting for students is easy, accessible, and secure, because they tend to be  more mobile than the rest of the population.

They’re not just going to school, but are working or raising families and taking care of loved ones, she said.

“Providing ample access to the ballot box is important to me,” she said.

Toulouse Oliver was elected New Mexico secretary of state in 2016. She served as Bernalillo County clerk from 2007-2016. She is running for re-election as Secretary of State this year.


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