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14 Quotes About Democracy That Will Make You Want to Get Out and Vote

Thought-provoking ideas from presidents, authors, activists, and everyone in between.

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Why we vote

Editor’s Note: Reader’s Digest is partnering with WeThePurple.org to republish articles from our archives that dramatize and revive patriotic enthusiasm about democracy and its core values. Reader's Digest has long published inspiring quotations about every imaginable topic both from well-known individuals and our millions of readers.

Casting our vote is fundamental to our democracy. To past generations who prevailed against fascism and totalitarianism, to women, and to African Americans who fought hard for the right, voting has been a duty and a privilege. Voter turnout tends to hover between 50-60% in presidential elections, with low turnout attributed to apathy, disillusionment, or simply the feeling that's one's vote won't make a difference. But nothing is further from the truth. If you're looking for a reason to get excited about voting, read on:

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Franklin D. Roosevelt on the power of a vote

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Alexander Woollcott on successful democracy

This archival essay shows us that democracy "demands change."

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Abraham Lincoln on elections

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Suzy Kassem on choosing great leaders

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Gore Vidal on being an informed voter

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Lyndon B. Johnson on injustice

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Richelle E. Goodrich on honoring sacrifice

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Larry Sabato on showing up

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Robert A. Heinlein on deciding whom to vote for

View Slides 11-15
Originally Published in Reader's Digest