Meghan Markle first member of modern royal family to vote in US election: report

Meghan Markle reportedly cast her ballot in Santa Barbara where she now lives with her husband Prince Harry

For several reasons, Meghan Markle has been a royal unlike anything the British monarchy has ever seen. Now the heavily scrutinized Duchess of Sussex is making history as the first person in the modern royal family to ever cast a vote in a U.S. presidential election.

According to PEOPLE, a source close to Markle claims she “is voting in this election,” but stopped short of clarifying whether whether she voted early or plans to cast her ballot locally on Tuesday somewhere near her Santa Barbara, California, home.

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“Every four years, we’re told, ‘This is the most important election of our lifetime.’ But this one is. When we vote, our values are put into action, and our voices are heard,” Markle said back in September during an appearance on the ABC special to mark the annual Time100 issue.

“They have taken a keen interest in this election and I’m sure they are eagerly awaiting the outcome,” shared a friend who says both Markle and husband Prince Harry have kept a close watch on this current election cycle and are heavily invested in the outcome.

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In August, Markle – who often characterized as a proud advocate for women’s rights even before becoming a member of the royal family – spoke with feminist icon Gloria Steinem about the importance of women voting, noting, “People forget how hard women like you and so many others before you fought for us to just be where we are right now.”

“If you don’t vote, you don’t exist,” Steinem added as Markle nodded in agreement. “It is the only place we’re all equal, the voting booth.”

Prince Harry is ineligible to vote in this week’s election because he is British. However, because he was born into the royal family, he isn’t allowed to vote in England either as the monarchy is meant to stay out of all political affairs and give the semblance of impartiality.

Although there has been speculation that he clearly supports his wife’s political views, during the Time 100 special he still chose his words carefully, by impartially reminding viewers, “As we approach this November, it’s vital that we reject hate speech, misinformation and online negativity. What we consume, what we are exposed to, and what we engage with online, has a real effect on all of us.”

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