During the Roman Republic, although men and women both had the rights of citizenship, only men could vote. Who they were permitted to vote for depended on social class. Patrician men voted for representation in the Senate. Voting for assembly members was organized by tribes and family socio-economic units. Once elected, the senators and other members of the assemblies then voted on laws and elected the two consuls who held the highest political offices in the Roman Republic. The lower class plebeians elected members to serve on the Plebeian Council, who in turn elected the tribunes.
It was very important that eligible citizens not be denied the right and ability to exercise the vote, as it was one of the central premises of the Roman identity. While all male citizens of age could vote, it is important to remember that non-citizens, slaves, freedmen, women, and children did not have the right to vote in Republican Rome even though they made up the bulk of the population.