Broken equipment, running out of supplies and long lines at the polls are all big worries on Election Day. What is the last thing on most clerks’ minds? “I Voted” stickers, but it’s the first thing on most voters’ minds, for good reason.
Many voters wear the stickers as a badge of honor, posting photos on social media to let all of their friends know that they voted. It’s become so popular that Facebook has a feature now where users can add “I Voted” to their status updates.
Studies have shown that showing off the stickers works to get more people to the polls. For one, it raises awareness that an election is being held that day. Also, when people wear the stickers and see others wearing them, it gives everyone a greater sense of community. In turn, people who see the stickers that haven’t voted will be motivated to vote in order to feel like a part of that community.
In some cases, voters are given time off on Election Day as long as they use that time to vote. Many of the employers use the “I Voted” stickers as proof that an employee was actually at the polls.
The stickers have become such a big staple of going to the polls that voters feel cheated when they aren’t given one. After Presidential Primary elections this year, many voters took to Twitter to express their frustration with not receiving a sticker. Some states have even started giving out stickers with their absentee ballots as absentee voters requested them.
Even though the “I Voted” stickers are sometimes an afterthought on Election Day, it is imperative to make sure every voter gets one. Not only will it get more people to the polls, it gives all voters a sense of pride and confidence to return on Election Day year after year.