5 Fun Voting Facts
Election day is just around the corner. A lot of Americans have already voted via mail or at early voting stations but if you're the type that waits to the very last day to pull the trigger or are not planning on voting here are five fun voting facts compliments of thirteen.org that may encourage you to get civically engaged sooner than later. Enjoy.
America’s Non-elected President
The only President and Vice President not elected to the office was Gerald Ford. Using the 25th Amendment, President Richard Nixon appointed Ford as Vice President after Spiro Agnew resigned from the position. Nine months later, President Nixon resigned and Gerald Ford rose up in his place.
Texas: Vote with a Gun License or Student ID?
Texas will let you vote with a gun license, but not with a student ID
Fun Fact #3: Ohio Constitution “No Idiots” Clause
Ohio’s constitution prohibits “idiots” from voting. Article V, Section 6 of Ohio’s constitution states “No idiot, or insane person, shall be entitled to the privileges of an elector.” (Ratified: 1851)
Fun Fact #1: George Washington Bought Drinks on Election Day
In 1758, George Washington, then a young candidate for the Virginia House of Burgesses— the first legislative assembly of elected representatives in North America — bought a huge round of drinks on Election Day. Washington spent his entire campaign budget — 50 pounds — on 160 gallons of liquor served to 391 voters. The custom of buying votes with booze was one of the English traditions imported to the American colony. Washington also was following a Virginia tradition in which barrels of liquor were rolled to courthouse lawns and polling places on Election Day.
New Jersey Allowed Women to Vote Longest
The New Jersey Constitution of 1776 did not discriminate by gender when it came to voting.
[A]ll inhabitants of this Colony, of full age, who are worth fifty
pounds proclamation money, clear estate in the same, and have
resided within the county in which they claim a vote for twelve
months immediately preceding the election, shall be entitled to vote
for Representatives in Council and Assembly; and also for all other
public officers, that shall be elected by the people of the county at
The gender neutral language was not an oversight. In 1797 all New Jersey counties used “he or she” to refer to voters. However, in 1807, New Jersey Women lost the right to vote in New Jersey when voting was restricted to “free, white, male citizens.” This made New Jersey the last state in the country to take voting rights away from women. For more details on women’s right to vote in New Jersey, see this article in the Rutgers Law Review.