As what the title have stated, is it always sufficient for citizens to be an informed voter to make correct voting decision for the country?

Is there any real life cases whereby well-informed citizen makes correct decision and helped the country, and cases whereby voting just somehow went wrong?

  • 5
    How do you define helping the country and something going wrong? Different people might see the same thing as good or bad.
    – JJJ
    Oct 26 '18 at 17:15
  • 3
    Welcome to you. You might want to sharpen the focus of your question, as it stands it seems to relate to a single voter and a nebulous and undefined "good" outcome. Currently it is waaay too broad to be answerable
    – BobE
    Oct 26 '18 at 17:39
  • 6
    Informed voters don't make the 'correct' choice, because if there was an objectively correct choice there wouldn't be much point in having a vote at all. Informed voters are just voters who cast their vote for what they believe is the right choice, rather than just getting into the booth and tossing a coin.
    – Giter
    Oct 26 '18 at 18:11
  • 1
    @Gitfer - you see my definition of an informed voter is a voter that knows who they are voting for and why, for each candidate for each office. As contrasted with "it's the way my parents always voted, or I do what my husband tells me, or I don't follow politics, or I'll vote for anyone who offers me a drink or baseball tickets" Unfortunately I've experienced too many of the latter group.
    – BobE
    Oct 26 '18 at 20:49
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    Answer in a comment: No. The more abstract version of this question would be "Is expert opinion always more correct?", the answer to which is: no, of course not, for which innumerable examples exist.
    – agc
    Oct 29 '18 at 2:37

Does being an informed voter always lead to good outcome?

You need to define terms.

  • What does "Good" mean?
  • What does "Informed" mean?
  • What does "outcome" mean?

But to clearly answer your question:

Informed according to who?

It basically comes down to who you believe. The data suggests that the number one driving factor for Americans is Partisanship. In short, one group of people have a certain value and another group has theirs.

It basically boils down to values, not facts or truth. Both parties promote specific policy positions and citizens either support them or not. Data might prove one position or another wrong, but that's generally irrelevant.

The basic truth, is there are many citizens who don't care about the data. Many people would prefer policy that reflects their values and worldview rather than the most "fact driven" answer. This is mostly because humans are creatures of emotion and empathy.

Why do people spend so much time and emotion attempting to apply their own moral sense to an animal’s actions? The answer lies in the human capacity for empathy — one of the qualities that helps us along as a social species.

When we are confronted with another person — say, someone in pain — our brains respond not just by observing, but by copying the experience. “Empathy results in emotion sharing,” explains Claus Lamm, a social cognitive neuroscientist at the University of Vienna in Austria. “I don’t just know what you are feeling, I create an emotion in myself. This emotion makes connections to situations when I was in that emotional state myself.”

... and this is VERY important to democracy. Because it might be efficient to cut spending to help people... and sure, it'll help the budget. The numbers would play that out. But in reality, it doesn't work that way.

So, the issue "We need to save money." The government responds with a cut to veteran's health care. The population doesn't want this and will support policies helping veterans. Fact, cutting spending will help the budget.

Sure, we KNOW making cuts saves money. But our values say, money isn't as important as the well-being of veterans.

That was a very general easy example. Abortion is a far more complex issue. Because of the interlinked issues of science, religion, history and women's rights.

... and there's a whole host of issues like this. The short answer is, people know enough to vote. People, on average know enough. This question assumes that all we need is "knowledge" and that will provide outcomes to the positive. That's simply not the case. Issues are more complex than Facts.

I'm saying your terms are vague and more importantly imply that "knowing" is enough for a democracy to function. It isn't. Engagement is likely the strongest indicator of a successful or "Good" democracy.

To quote the Center for American Progress

For the nation’s democracy to function properly and for government to provide fair representation, all eligible Americans must have the opportunity to vote—and be encouraged to do so. Our collective self-rule is established and fostered through free, fair, accessible, and secure elections through which the voice of every eligible American is heard.

If a minority of citizens vote and a majority stay home, then a minority will decide policy. At the end of the day, engagement is everything.

  • "If a minority vote, then a minority will decide policy." Confusing statement, are you referring to a demographic minority?
    – BobE
    Oct 26 '18 at 20:39
  • @BobE A minority of the Citizens. So, if there's 100 million people and only 20 million vote and then 11 million pick the government, that's a minority of citizens picking policy. Oct 29 '18 at 19:56
  • your edit to the answer satisfied my confusion.
    – BobE
    Oct 29 '18 at 20:39

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