14 Women & Non-Binary Folks On Why They Won't Date You If You Didn't Vote In The Midterms
As some have noted, the 2018 midterm elections may be the most important one in U.S. history. Voter turnout hasn't just been impressive, but is breaking records in some parts of the country. In Texas, for example, the early turnout for voting had already exceeded the total turnout for the 2014 midterm elections a few days before actual Election Day. People are voting like their democracy — and their lives — depend on it because, it does.
With an administration that wants to erase over a million people by denying them the right to recognize the gender they identify with, prefers walls to bridges, and essentially wants to strip anyone who isn't a cisgender white man of their autonomy, it's clear to many that this isn't a moment in history to be apolitical.
With so much on the line right now, the question has to be asked: Could you date someone who chose not to vote in the midterm elections? I know I couldn't, but I also couldn't date someone who doesn't vote at all. And, not too surprisingly, I'm not alone in this.
Here are 14 women and non-binary folks on why they won't date someone who chose not to vote in the midterm elections.
1. Rachel, 26
"Growing up, I was taught that talking about politics (especially at the dinner table) is impolite. However, in the current climate, we can't afford to be concerned with what is polite or impolite. Women's rights, LGBTQ rights, immigrant rights, the right to not worry about a shooting in your local grocery store/yoga studio/school/temple, etc., is way more important than that. Voting ensures that we get better people into government, people who will stand up for the right thing. To not vote in the midterms is a show of one's values, or lack thereof. I couldn't date someone who voted against the rights I listed above, and similarly, anyone who is too lazy to make an impact."
2. Michelle, 31
"Not caring to vote or thinking it doesn't matter because it doesn't affect you not only screams privilege but a lack of respect for others, too. And if there's anything I don't want in a partner it's someone who's so out of out touch with what's going on right now or lacks empathy."
3. Jennifer, 33
"There are many people who can't vote right now, and I have tremendous sympathy for them. However, choosing not to vote is a cool way to indicate a few things about your personality. Either 1) You are listening to a president talk about shooting people seeking asylum and are somehow apathetic or cruel enough to think 'eh, that sounds fine, seems like that party is going in a good direction,' or 2) you are the kind of deluded, narcissistic weirdo who thinks that you are punishing imperfect politicians by not voting for them rather than punishing the most vulnerable people in the country (I promise, decent but flawed politicians are not going to seriously rethink how to make you, personally, more excited if you don't vote for them. Why would they? You're a non-voter and they're going to work to appeal to people who vote. All that will happen is that perfectly monstrous politicians will win, and vulnerable people will have more rights stripped from them.) Or 3) you're just so lazy as to qualify as basically comatose. Cruelty, delusions of grandeur and laziness — none of those really seem like qualities that will enhance a relationship."
4. Chloë, 39
"Not voting is basically admitting that you are so privileged that the outcomes don’t affect you. And not recognizing ones own privilege is some serious pre-millennium uncool and isn't relationship material in my mind."
5. Steph, 29
"If I was in New York still dating there, it would depend. Because New York City is super liberal, I think I’d be less aggressive. If we were very early on, I’d likely let it go. I would encourage them to, but not end it. If they were voting Republican, I’d say let the door hit you on the way out."
6. Emily, 28
"I wouldn’t date someone who doesn’t vote in the midterms because inaction is a choice. And if you’re not standing up for all people, especially those whose basic human rights are at stake due to the bigoted and unjust policies of the current administration, then our values are simply not compatible. Apathy is a deeply unattractive trait."
7. Amaal, 19
"Not voting or not worrying about politics is a privilege many Americans don't have. If you're not voting, then you obviously don't care about anyone other than yourself so, how would you be a good partner?"
8. Mieko, 41
"I wouldn’t date someone who wouldn’t vote, but then my ex didn’t vote consistently. He would say things like, 'we live in NY and my one blue vote won’t count that much,' and I would just let it be because I didn’t want to argue and make our relationship worst for something that I could let go. I wouldn't tolerate it now though."
9. Jess, 28
"After a bad experience of dating someone from the opposite end of the political spectrum, I have now realized how important it is to me to date someone who is politically passionate about issues that matter. For me, a person who doesn’t vote in midterm elections, especially this one, is someone that I probably won’t be able to connect with."
10. Jennie, 35
"There’s no reason NOT to vote. If someone I was dating could give me a good enough reason not to vote, then I’d be OK with it. But since there is no good reason — like absolutely NO good reason — any person I date has to vote. Most especially now. I see a non-vote as a vote for the enemy."
11. Wandy, 23
"I won’t date someone who doesn’t vote in the midterms because it signals to me that my partner isn’t politically informed, or chooses not to be. To me, that also shows a lack of concern for other people. The issues we vote on during the midterms — health care and reproductive rights, gun control, immigration, education — are ones that affect everyone nationally and locally, directly and indirectly.
By not casting a vote in the midterms we show indifference, laziness, and apathy. We turn away from each other and those who can’t use their vote to speak up on issues that will affect them, too. A stranger, a friend, and even a partner should be concerned about those issues and those people. Not doing so reflects how a partner might think of or hold indifference towards others, plus even me and my rights as a Latina woman in this country.
Compassion, and accountability are so attractive in someone you're dating. Just last month I was double-checking my voter registration in preparation for the midterms, and my boyfriend thought he was already registered to vote, too. I suggested he double-check too just in case, and it turns out he actually wasn’t registered although he had voted in 2016. He re-submitted his registration so that he could cast his vote today as planned. So I’m not kidding when I say if you don’t vote, we don’t date."
12. Kelly, 24
"Sometime before the 2016 election, I was at this guy's place starting to fool around with him when he mentioned something that reminded me I needed to check my voter registration. I said that out loud, and he offhandedly was like 'oh, I don't vote.' I shoved his half-naked body off me and was like, 'Excuse me, what?!' He said something about how he doesn't care about the government and how he believes that nothing matters at all ever. I promptly left and never spoke to him again. ... There is NO bigger turn-off than not voting. It shows just how little you care about people outside yourself. Hard pass."
13. Lauren, 37
"Before I got married, I wasn’t as politically engaged as I am now. Although both my husband and I vote, I can say that if I felt the way I feel now about politics, I couldn’t date someone who didn’t vote — whether it’s the midterms, the primaries, any of it. It’s not just about civic duty. It’s about voting for what’s right against what’s wrong."
14. Autumn, 29
"I can't date people who are lazy and don't stand up for themselves, and don't have strength or intelligence. So, I don't think I could date someone who didn't vote or wouldn't vote in the midterms."
If you've yet to vote today, locate your polling place, and get to it. You still have time. You don't want to miss out on who could be your soulmate just because you didn't take the time to vote... and, basically, give a damn.