Vernon Espinoza: Stifling young voters

October 23, 2013 

As the Nov. 4 election gets closer, I start thinking about all the North Carolina teenagers who will have to wait longer to register to vote. The election overhaul bill that Gov. Pat McCrory signed this summer repeals the 2009 law that allowed pre-registration to 16- and 17-year-olds. In 2012, 160,000 teenagers were able to vote because they pre-registered, and now our elected officials are taking away my peers’ rights.

This backward-thinking law is pathetic. A true representative democracy should have as many voters as possible to elect officials, but by taking away pre-registration, the least-represented age demographic in North Carolina will vote even less, and the voices of 18- to 24-year-olds will be nothing but a whisper in our elected officials’ ears.

Vernon Espinoza

Winston-Salem

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