Former First Lady Michelle Obama opened up alongside 99 other influential women, including Meghan Markle, Madeleine Albright, and Ava DuVernay, to talk to Marie Claire about why it's so important to vote in the 2020 election. This is a cause that's particularly close to Obama's heart: She's co-chair of When We All Vote, a nonprofit that aims to close the race and age voting gap. In what could be the most influential election of our time, she has important words about showing up at the polls or through the mail.
"I'm voting for two reasons," she explains. "First—it's something I do every election. I grew up seeing my father, who had multiple sclerosis, vote in every election no matter what. He knew just how important it was to make his voice heard and to do his part to ensure we have competent leaders in office. I'm not just talking about president of the United States; I'm talking about about mayors, governors, senators, county supervisors, and everyone else."
"We need them all to have our best interests at heart. These folks make decisions that affect our daily lives—from how our schools are run to how our neighborhoods are policed to how our tax dollars are used. And voting is how we make sure the leaders in office reflect our values."
"When we all vote, we take our power back. And that's the other big reason I'm voting: because this election could not be more important, especially at a time of such uncertainty and upheaval. The truth is, a lot of folks are hoping we start questioning the power of our votes. So we've got to get registered and turn out—in person or through our mail-in ballots. It's the surest path to achieve the changes that we seek."