Voting not a priority

By Natalie F. Jones

Colleen Weeks – “Too Busy”
Age 35
Hometown: Springfield, Mo.
Occupation: Not working due to disability

Colleen Weeks was in a car accident about 15 years that left her disabled, relying on friends and family to get her where she needs to go. Going to vote isn’t high on the list and her voting record has been spotty ever since.

“I’m lucky if I can get to the end of my block, let alone about eight blocks, nine blocks down,” she said.

She asked a number of friends and her fiance if they might be able to drive her to the polls on Nov 6, 2012, but she could not find anyone who was available. Many of the people she knows work jobs at odd hours, she said, so they often sleep during the day.

If she had voted, she probably would have cast her ballot for Republican Mitt Romney, although neither presidential candidate really appealed to her. She said she was concerned that she thought both of them would cut Medicaid and Medicare if they won.

“They don’t listen to the regular voters,” she says. It seems to her that the political parties rather than voters dictate which candidates are chosen and what their platforms will be.

She voted in 2008 and was able to walk to the polls then, but her health problems have been worsening. She did not know she had the option to vote by absentee ballot.

She also didn’t follow political news much prior to the election. Most of what she knew she learned from talking with her fiancé, she said.

So, instead of heading to the polls, she spent Election Day caring for her 11-year-old daughter, who didn’t have school because of the elections.

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