By Melina Guth
Now President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris accompanied by Jill Biden, far left, on the fourth day of the Democratic National Convention, Aug. 20, 2020, at the Chase Center in Wilmington, Delaware. (Source: Deadline)
After days of painfully long waiting, the winners of this year’s presidential election, President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, were finally announced on November 7th. The election saw the biggest voter turnout since 1968, amassing over 148 million tallied votes, as well as its first woman and woman of color Vice President-elect. And, in the words of former United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton via Twitter, the voters have spoken.
Now, let’s see what a few Hammond students have to say about some of the election’s hot topics such as mail-in voting and the electoral college, as well as some of their personal thoughts and opinions about the results.
Q: What are your thoughts on mail in voting and do you support its expansion?
A: “I think mail-in voting is a good alternative to actually going in to vote. I think I support its expansion, especially considering [voter suppression] in-person towards people in prominently Left or Democratic places. They are not getting easy and efficient access to voting, so I think mail-in voting is a good alternative, especially during Covid.” — Joey Lee, Junior
A: “[I think] mail-in-voting is a good system. People aren’t able to go to the polls on election day, so it provides an alternate system that allows them to still participate in their democracy. Waiting in the poll lines is annoying, so it’s a quick and easy process. In fact my parents voted by mail this year, since there was a whole pandemic.” — Saana Nazir, Sophomore
Q: What do you think separates this election from the ones in the past?
A: “I think something that would separate it from the past is the amount of people depending on this election. A lot of people are not really favorable of Trump and what he has done, so they are trying their best to vote him out. [They hope] that some type of change can be made, and I feel like it’s not necessarily a ride or die type thing, but there are a lot who are emotionally invested. Its kind of like a gamble on their life and how it will be like with the next president.” — Adom Amissah, Junior
A: “I think [the] whole pandemic creates a unique situation for this election. Since I’m in high school and older [than I was last election], this one is different because I know more of what is going on.” — Joey Lee, Junior
Q: What are your thoughts/feelings about the results of the election?
A: “I’m glad that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won. These are HUGE steps forward for women, South Asian Americans, and African Americans. It’s definitely a step in the right direction, and it feels cool knowing I’m watching history play out in front of me. On the other hand, we as the American people still need to hold them accountable for their past actions and hope they live up to their future policies and plans.” — Kendal George, Senior
A: “I am very content with the election results, seeing Joe Biden’s projected actions for his first few months of office makes me happy. He intends to not only repair the wrongs of Trump, but to further build, and make an effort to lower coronavirus cases.” — Emilyn Heikell, Sophomore
Q: What are your thoughts/feelings about the election process?
A: “The process is very long and complicated, and the electoral college has no real reason to exist anymore in my opinion. It over represents small states and underrepresents large ones. We should just use the popular vote like everyone else.” — Lucas Eaton, Sophomore
Q: Do you think that the electoral college should be removed? Should we transfer to just the popular vote?
A: “I’m very skeptical about the electoral college, I feel like we should just stick to popular vote. It can be angering if the popular vote calls for one candidate and the electoral college picks another. That’s not really listening to the voices of their citizens, so I feel like the popular vote would work [better] in our situation.” — Adom Amissah, Junior
A: “In my opinion, I believe the electoral college should be removed and we should transfer to a popular voting system. I understand why the electoral college [was] put in place, but I don’t believe it’s an accurate representation of what the people of America want. Especially for swing states and places where certain people are underrepresented.” — Kendal George, Senior
Q: Is there anything that surprised you about this election? If so, what?
A: “I was surprised by how close the electoral college was. Considering how badly Trump handled the pandemic, I didn’t expect it to be [so close.] I also expected Florida to be blue.” — Saana Nazir, Sophomore
A: “The only real surprise for me was that Florida voted republican; most of the polls showed Biden winning there. Other than that, nothing was too unexpected.”
Now, most importantly, ask yourself. How are you processing this election? What did you learn this year that you didn’t know before? There are a great deal of lessons to be learned from this election, don’t be afraid to speak your mind!