What would it take for you to vote in your municipal election? Would you do it for a chance to win big bucks? The Los Angeles government is currently considering a controversial method to increase voting rates in which a vote would enter you to a special lottery draw. The best way to encourage citizens to participate in democracy? The L.A. Ethics Commission says yes!
Due to difficulties with getting citizens to come and vote, the Los Angeles government is considering an unconventional fix – offering a cash prize to encourage voters. Less than 25% of LA citizens voted in the last municipal elections. The LA Ethics Commission has even referred to the situation as a crisis. This might explain the government’s need to think outside the box and come up with a significant incentive to get their voters to the ballot box.
And how much is on the line, you ask? Possibly up to $100,000 in total prizes, divided into anywhere from 100 to 25 prizes. To enter the draw, LA residents will need to submit a ballot on the day of the elections. While lottery players might find this number slightly less impressive than, let’s say, last Friday’s Mega Millions $180 Million, it is still a precedent for anyone to get anything by voting, other than realizing their democratic right to vote, of course. But will it do the trick? The Ethics Commission, which voted on the matter a week ago, sure seems to think they have the magic solution.
Some eyebrows were raised regarding the Ethics Commission’s decision, as offering money in exchange for votes is illegal in most American states. Objectors say the idea itself is an insult to democracy and is bound to bring in voters from all the wrong reasons and without consideration to the issues and the candidates.
Nathan Hochman, president of LA’s Ethic Commission insists that this is the best solution they could come up with. “We’re not telling them how to vote, who to vote for or what to vote for” Hochman said in an interview for Fox News, “The assumption is that people are uniformed and will stay uniformed. I believe that assumption is actually wrong.”
The ironic thing in this whole story is that if the voting rates will soar, like the Ethics Commission hopes it will, voters’ chances of actually winning a prize will dramatically decrease. Not so tempting anymore, huh? But winning odds have never been the strongest selling point for lotteries, it was always more about the dream. This is a chance to participate in a short fantasy for no cost and have a say on what goes on in your country which you’re at it, so why not?
Not an LA voter? Bigger lottery prizes are up for grabs every week no matter where you live or who you vote for! Purchase your lottery tickets online from anywhere in the world with theLotter.