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I have been a registered voter since I became of legal age to vote.  I have lived in various states and had to adhere to the rules of each one along the way.  Those rules have never gotten in the way of my voting and I must admit that I never paid attention to exactly how asinine any of the rules happen to be or that they were inconsistent across the state lines.  It is almost like when I was a child and thought that the message in the fortune cookie was truly meant especially for me and that the specific message somehow magically appeared once I put my hands on the cookie.  I would pause for a moment before opening the cookie to allow time for the message to inscribe itself.  

Like the naivety of a child, I just assumed that the rules that I had to follow in my state, in my region, were the same rules that everyone else had to follow.  Perhaps, because that is the only thing that makes any sense.  We are voting, as a country, for someone to lead this country and yet, we each have different rules that must be followed in order to cast the vote or have that vote count.  RIDICULOUS! How can people not complain about the process when a major flaw of the process is inconsistency.

Why is it that in Harlem choosing all democrats on the ballot DOES NOT include the Democratic presidential nominee where as in Ohio it DOES?  And, guess what, it doesn’t work for Republicans either.  And, why is there not even an “All Democratic” (or Republican) choice on my ballot?

Why are the candidates placed in different orders on each of the ballots?  (I realize that we should all be able to read and that the order is really insignificant, however, it is still inconsistent)   

Why is it that former offenders are banned from voting for life in Florida yet, in other states they are able to have their voting rights reinstated once they have done the time for their crime?

Why is it that the accepted forms of identification vary state by state?

I was listening to the Steve Harvey Morning Show this morning and he said that where he is, the absentee ballot needed to be put in three different envelopes, in a particular order, or it would not count.  If that is truly the case, that is truly insane.

I could go on and on but, the compilation of this list would last well into the night.  At the end of the day, I understand states wanting to govern themselves.  However, where that governess or lack there of can have an effect on the federal system, it is the federal system that should govern the process.  Individual states should not be able to decide how to regulate federal elections. 

Perhaps, if the rules were made clear and consistent, across the board, voter registration numbers and voter turn out would be far improved.

One country.

One presidential election.

One set of rules and/or guidelines.

For now, take the time to know the rules in your area and follow those rules to a T in order that your vote counts.

If you need to know where to go, to find your polling place check out www.gottavote.org