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Developing students as public servants from the classroom to the polls
Unformatted Document Text:  Draft: Lindaman and Charles 3 Continually there is tension between increasing political participation through voter turnout and reducing the potential of voter fraud. Many government officials enter the debate as they interpret, implement and enforce election regulations and restrictions. Twenty-five states have passed more stringent voter identification requirements beyond those enacted in the Help American Vote Act (HAVA) of 2002. For example, one policy advocate for these stricter standards is Todd Rokita, Indiana’s Secretary of State. In Indiana Democratic Party v. Todd Rokita (2008), the U.S. Supreme Court is hearing arguments regarding the constitutionality of the photo voter identification requirement in Indiana, but its decision is deemed to have larger ramifications for the other twenty-five states which implement the Help America Vote Act more rigorously by requiring additionally voter identification by state. Whether it is through voter registration, voter identification cards, or election day voting (Knack 1995; King 1994; Lindaman and Joslyn 2000), the poll workers become the initial point of contact to the ballot box and implementation (and enforcement) of election regulations. Their behavior not only affects the ability for a voter to cast a vote or complete a ballot but their participation also impacts their own sense of civic responsibility. The hypothesized effects are only further exacerbated if the poll workers are relatively young in age or naïve in the political process. Arguments have been well documented regarding the repeated participation in voting activities and the socialization of youth into the political process are worthy efforts to increase civic engagement and citizenship (Putnam 1996; 2000). In his study at Fordham University, Sherrod (2003) examines whether the intense involvement in civics and government classes and the commitment to many community

Authors: Lindaman, Kara. and Charles, Ruth.
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Draft: Lindaman and Charles
3
Continually there is tension between increasing political participation through
voter turnout and reducing the potential of voter fraud. Many government officials enter
the debate as they interpret, implement and enforce election regulations and restrictions.
Twenty-five states have passed more stringent voter identification requirements beyond
those enacted in the Help American Vote Act (HAVA) of 2002. For example, one policy
advocate for these stricter standards is Todd Rokita, Indiana’s Secretary of State. In
Indiana Democratic Party v. Todd Rokita (2008), the U.S. Supreme Court is hearing
arguments regarding the constitutionality of the photo voter identification requirement in
Indiana, but its decision is deemed to have larger ramifications for the other twenty-five
states which implement the Help America Vote Act more rigorously by requiring
additionally voter identification by state.
Whether it is through voter registration, voter identification cards, or election day
voting (Knack 1995; King 1994; Lindaman and Joslyn 2000), the poll workers become
the initial point of contact to the ballot box and implementation (and enforcement) of
election regulations. Their behavior not only affects the ability for a voter to cast a vote
or complete a ballot but their participation also impacts their own sense of civic
responsibility. The hypothesized effects are only further exacerbated if the poll workers
are relatively young in age or naïve in the political process. Arguments have been well
documented regarding the repeated participation in voting activities and the socialization
of youth into the political process are worthy efforts to increase civic engagement and
citizenship (Putnam 1996; 2000).
In his study at Fordham University, Sherrod (2003) examines whether the intense
involvement in civics and government classes and the commitment to many community


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