Back to Driving Force, Summer 2018


Not Fake News: Your Vote Counts!

Ballot Boxes Want You to Be Heard in Upcoming Elections



Voting can often seem like a cynical matter. When roughly 130 million Americans cast a ballot for president, it can be tough to see how one vote will make a difference. Winning the lottery may seem more likely than your vote deciding an election outcome. However, sometimes truth is stranger than fiction—as proven by many unexpected results in the pivotal 2016 general election.

Despite not receiving the major headlines, consequential elections occur months earlier than November’s general midterm elections. Before a candidate can appear on the ballot in November, he or she must first win the nomination of their respective political party. In most cases, that is determined by the voters through primary elections. While the results of these primary elections are often thought of as foregone conclusions, recent history has shown otherwise.

Your vote might matter the most in the primaries. The reason? Turnout is typically substantially lower than the general election; thus, your vote is worth more. Normally it is most passionate voters—frequently less moderate than the mainstream electorate—that show up in these elections. In many districts, the primary victor will be the de facto winner in the general election. Avoid overlooking this important ballot box.

The greatest tool at each citizen’s disposal is their right to vote. Voting gives you a voice in government, allowing you to choose leaders and shape the future of the country and our hobby. Use the voting tool at www.semaSAN.com/semavotes to register to vote and learn the deadlines for where you live. In advance, find out if your state and federal representatives are affiliated with the hobby-friendly, SEMA-supported caucuses at www.semaSAN.com/statecaucus and www.semaSAN.com/federalcaucus. You can locate your elected officials at www.semaSAN.com under the “Legislators” tab.

U.S. elections are not typically decided by drawing a name from a hat or flipping a coin. Therefore, the nation’s community of car enthusiasts can help determine next year’s political course this fall. Voters will elect 435 members of the U.S. House, 35 U.S. senators, 36 governors and thousands of state and local leaders. Make sure your vote is counted and your voice is heard: GO VOTE!