2012 Presidential Election: What Does CSULB Know?
With the 2012 Presidential Debates set to take place tonight at 9:00 p.m. Eastern Time and the election looming in the distance a lot of people have already made the decision on whom to vote for. Ballots have been mailed out, and commercials have been flooding our television screens for what seems like an eternity. Being a student at CSULB you’re accustomed to hearing rumblings here and there about the coming elections but just how in tune are students with politics and their inner workings?
“Usually I just go off of what I see on TV or what I hear other kids talk about,” says CSULB student Jennifer Huang. “ Politics on the news can be a little wordy and boring to some people so I can see why some kids don’t know what’s going on.”
For students that have a hard time digesting the world of politics and the coming election there are web sites like realclearpolitics.com that break down each candidate and their platform as well as demonstrates polls and statistics all in an easy to read little package.
Often times when looking for something whether its information on an assignment or information on the election we turn to the Internet. Not because its right, but because its there. Its easy to get to, easy to read and easy to understand most of the time. “I think Facebook has the attention of a lot of people when it comes to the election. People always post status updates on why Romney is bad and Why Obama is bad. Stuff like that. And since we’re on Facebook all the time in class we see it everyday,” Says student Peter Gilmore, “ I actually try to keep up with the candidates and their platforms because I want to know I’m making the right decision when I vote. A lot of people aren’t like that and they’ll just go off of what they see on Facebook or what their friends tell them.”
Not that the candidates haven’t been trying to use Facebook and the Internet to their advantage. Recently a pro-Obama ad paid for by the Jewish Council for Education and Research starred Samuel L. Jackson and told America to, “WAKE THE F*** UP!” On the other side of the board, Mitt Romney’s camp has been posting on his Facebook asking followers to ‘Like and Share’ in order to get them to 8 million likes.
The Obama ad depicts a normal American family enjoying time at home, with a narration by Samuel L. Jackson in the same vain as ‘The Night Before Christmas’. Several scenarios are presented, all with the same message to, “WAKE THE F*** UP” and get involved in the election process. The ad is filled with humor and appeals to both a young and older audience. When students were shown the ad, they had very different reactions. “I think this is pretty awesome,” says student Aaron Zuniga, “I love that they threw Sam Jackson in there, that’s so badass.” When asked if this had swayed his decision on who he was voting for he replied, “Well, I was already going to vote for Obama but this ad just makes him look even cooler next to Romney. I always thought Romney looked uptight and stuck up. Obama definitely looks like the cooler dude of the two.”
The Internet has also become a valuable tool for the youth to get their point across regarding the upcoming elections. Bloggers across the U.S. have been busy campaigning and gathering information about their favorite candidate. One such blogger Aaron Jeffers, attends nearby college Cal State Fullerton and runs his own blog. Recently he received a request in his comments box to present an unbiased point by point graph of Obama v. Romney. “I tried to be as unbiased as I could, but I’m only human. You can totally see some bias in my response. Oh well.,” He says as he shrugs. Among the issues mentioned, Jeffers touched on Healthcare, Education and Budget:
“8.Healthcare: Obama’s in favor of widely available healthcare including contraception and birth control. Romney pretty much designed “Obamacare,” but now he’s railing against it and largely seems to support privatization. Point Obama, minus one point Romney for being a confusing snake in the grass.”
There are many ways that students around campus get involved in the upcoming election and politics. Some go along with the ‘cool thing to do’ while others dive into the process to make an educated decision. With the way campaigns are run now, the Internet has been an important tool for both presidential candidates and the public. Voting polls will be available on campus for students who live in and around CSULB. Election day is November 6th , 2012.