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010603 Frances Fox Piven - Why Americans Still Don't Vote

Election 2000 was the most contentious and controversial in over a century. The infamous butterfly ballots and dangling chads are now part of folklore. Yet beyond those things deeper and troubling questions about the nature of American democracy arise. Voter turnout is appallingly low. Less than half the population votes for president, and under 40% for congressional races. Primaries? Don't even ask. Is low turnout all due to apathy? That's unlikely. Few countries have as many obstacles for citizens to go through to get to the ballot box as the US It seems rather obvious but why, for example, is election day on Tuesday, a workday?

Frances Fox Piven, founder of the welfare rights movement, is co-author of a number of award-winning books, including Regulating the Poor, The Breaking of the American Social Compact and Why Americans Still Don't Vote. She is Distinguished Professor of political science and sociology at the graduate school of the City University of New York.


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Alternative Radio (Aust.) PO Box 780 Morwell Victoria 3848 Australia
tel. 61-3-5134-8556 mob. 61-413-597-828 inquiries@araustralia.org
www.araustralia.org