Your Vote Is Worth It

by Tania Rahman, Social Media and Marketing Intern

It seems like only yesterday that Barack Obama was elected the 44th President of the United States. Voters, non-voters, students and people all over the world tuned in to watch our President become officially inaugurated on television. It is an exciting occasion for Americans, and the time has come yet again to make that important decision: to re-elect our current president, or put our hopes into a new leader.

Barack Obama is running for President once again, representing the Democratic Party. Mitt Romney is his opposition, representing, of course, the Republican Party. It's been a challenging year for both candidates, trying to convince Americans why each of them is the better candidate.  With the combative nature of the debates, the sometimes misleading statements being fired back and forth on media outlets, and the bold measures that the candidates have taken in order to impress, choosing the right candidate has become something of an arduous task for potential voters. Sifting through "facts" and knowing who to trust amidst a sea of muckraking journalists has made it difficult for those sincerely attempting to vote based on their personal convictions.

Voters are the voice of the free world. Voters have more power in their hands than they realize; the power to conceivably create the change they wish to see. It is important for the new generation of young adults to be encouraged to vote, and fortunately, the members of Binghamton University have taken it upon themselves to impress this  fact on potential college student voters as effectively as they can. BU has had student engagement activist Alexander Heffner speak to students on campus, political round tables  and multiple opportunities to register to vote. Students who are already registered to vote can take advantage of the voting booths that will be available on Election Day, Tuesday, November 6th, 6am-9pm in the Old Union Hall.

“It is important for young people to vote because it hasn't been that long since we have been allowed to vote, so the fact that we have the right to is something people should take advantage of. We make up a large part of the population, so we can make a difference,” said Mildred Ngminebayihi, a senior double majoring in political science and French.

In fact, the amount of Binghamton University student involvement in politics is noteworthy. Anthony Galli, a junior majoring in political science, is the talk of the town since he announced that he is running for the position of Broome County Legislator. The BU College Republicans, a student-interest political organization that is active on campus, often table in Tillman Lobby in the Old Union and were also responsible for planting miniature American flags all over campus on September 11th, one for every death caused by the events 11 years ago.  They are known supporters of Galli and do what they can to promote his candidacy.

The BU College Democrats are also active participants in the political discussion and have co-hosted events, include one which brings Democratic candidates in the community to campus to interact with students (Monday, November 5th at 5:30pm in LH2). They have recently hosted a Presidential Debate Watch Party as well, and provided extra incentive for students to attend by having Chipotle Mexican Grill cater the event.

Darin Mihalik is the president of BU College Republicans. He shared his thoughts on voting red in a state dominated by blue: “Yes, it's a blue state, but that's for the Electoral College and the US Senate. Let's not forget, as many people have, that we still have state governments and local governments that we elect. Being a conservative in a blue state only makes the Republican victories sweeter. Being a conservative in New York gives me a reason to be more involved in politics, makes me have to know more and work harder to get the Republican ideals across. Being the political minority for my early political years is one of the best things that has happened to me. I can easily say that it has made me absolutely sure of my beliefs about how my town, state, and country should work.” On the importance of young people getting involved in voting Mihalik notes, “We could be stuck picking up the pieces of crucial mistakes that Washington and Albany make over the next couple of years. Instead of complaining and suffering then, why don't we do something about it now?

We at the CCE encourage you to vote in this year's election. This generation is the voice of tomorrow. Make sure your voices are heard. VOTE ON ELECTION DAY, NOVEMBER 6TH IN OLD UNION HALL, 6am-9pm! Also, enjoy free food, games and other activities all day long, co-sponsored by the CCE and LateNite. 

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