This time last year, the entire country was in a frenzy about election day. We were about to elect (or reelect) a president. But this year, if you haven’t been listening closely, you could totally miss the fact that Tuesday (November 5th) is election day!
Why is it so easy to miss? Probably because 2013 is an off-year election.
Off-year elections take place on odd numbered years.
These elections generally don’t feature races for federal officials (such as Congressmen, or the president or vice president), or most state legislators and governors. Most races are for municipal officials, such as mayors or local officials.
If an off-year election does feature a race for any of the positions listed above, that race is called a special election and takes place to fill a vacant spot.
Voter turnout for off-year elections is always much lower than other years because there are less races and the races are less publicized.
So what’s going on this year? Here are some facts about the 2013 elections.
Virginia and New Jersey are holding elections for governor and state legislators. These states are a little different and always hold these elections the year after the presidential election.
Special Senate elections are being held in Massachusetts and New Jersey.
Special House of Representative elections are being held in Illinois, South Carolina, Missouri, Massachusetts, Alabama and Louisiana.
All other states are holding various elections for mayors and local officials.
How you can get involved:
If you’re 18, get out there and vote! Americans fought for our right to vote, and people all around the world are still fighting for theirs. Exercise the right you have.
Educate yourself. Even if you’re not 18 and can’t vote yet, you should still know what’s going on. Read up on elections happening in your town and state and pay attention to the results. The outcome will probably affect you in some way.
- No matter what age you are, if you feel passionate about a certain issue or candidate let it be known! Even if it’s too late to get involved for this years election, get involved next year. Assist at a rally or contact the candidate’s office and ask if there’s any way you can get involved in the campaign.
Take a look back at last year's election! GO