SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) – For Don Hughes, a resident of Syracuse, voting is not just a civic duty; it’s a way to shape the future for generations to come. Having cast his ballot without fail for the past 37 years, Hughes is a loyal advocate for the power of local elections.
“I vote every election day. It’s really important for me to vote because it’s the foundation of our democracy,” said Hughes.
He describes the voting process as seamless and convenient, emphasizing its accessibility and importance to everyone.
“Voting is super simple; you just go in, fill out your ballot, put the ballot in the machine … It’s great,” said Hughes.
But Hughes goes beyond being a dedicated voter; he firmly believes that voting should be mandatory, as implemented in other countries. He urges young voters to take their civic responsibility seriously, underscoring that they are throwing away their ability to influence the future by abstaining from voting.
“People are running for office, and they get in office, and they control budgets, they control local stuff, it’s roads and decisions. They’re making them on your behalf,” said Hughes.
Hughes goes as far to believe that voting should be a holiday. He says the Covid-19 pandemic actually helped improve the number of voters and this uncomplicated process should keep evolving.
“We had more early voting, absentee ballots became easier,” said Hughes. “We just still need to work on voter turnout.
In a time when civic engagement is crucial, Don Hughes hopes to stand as an example of the difference an individual’s commitment to voting can make. His unwavering dedication to participating in the democratic process is a testament to how voting can shape the future of communities like the city of Syracuse.