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  • E-News U. Contributor 3:04 pm on November 6, 2012 Permalink |
    Tags: , youth voting   

    Hampton U. students cast ballots for U.S. president 

    By Janiece Peterson

    It’s Election Day, and the time has come for many students at Hampton University to cast their votes for the next President of the United States.

    With it being the first time for some students to vote in a presidential election, many are excited and thrilled to take part in such an important political event.

    “This is the very first time that I am voting, said Brittany Delk, a senior theater major from Pennsauken, N.J. “I wasn’t of age at the last election.”

    Even though it was crowded at the polls, Delk, 21, was still excited about being there with many other Hampton University students.

    “[The] lines were long, but they moved fast,” said Delk. “I feel like I am making a difference and supporting the candidate that will make a change in this country.

    As the day continues on, some students were concerned about the end result of the election.

    “I’m excited and nervous, because [this race] is so close, and Virginia is a swing state,” said Kyr Mack, a senior English arts major from Chicago.

    Over the past few months, Virginia has been a battleground state that the presidential candidates have been campaigning hard for.

    As the race continues, and students make their way to the polls to cast their ballots, many will be anticipating tonight’s results to find out who will be the next president.

    “I’m positive this will be a close election,” said Patience Canty, a junior psychology major from Greenville, S.C.

    The writer is a junior in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications

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  • E-News U. Contributor 10:37 am on November 6, 2012 Permalink |
    Tags: early voting, north carolina   

    Early voting in battleground state North Carolina 

    By Olivia Lewis

    After months of preparation, calls, emails, debates and speeches, it is finally time to vote.

    But wait: So many people have already submitted their ballot.

    After recent presidential election voter lines ran out the door and sometimes down the street, many of this year’s voters decided to take advantage of 17 days worth of early voting opportunities.

    “I work and go to school so I don’t have time to wait in line all day,” said Nicole Bruce, a senior international business major at University of North Carolina-Charlotte. “And I already knew who I was voting for a while ago so it was just a lot easier for me to vote early.”

    The Washington Post reported that in 2008, Democrats led in North Carolina for the first time in 30 years due to early voting. This year, if Democrats don’t show forth the same effort, Republicans may take back the state.

    While Republicans and Democrats battle it out, Independent voters will also make a difference in this year’s election through early voting.

    “I voted early with my husband because we had the time,” said Carol Wilson, an independent voter in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. “It was much easier to do it beforehand than waiting in line for hours-especially during an election as important as this one,”

    President Obama’s win in 2008 was largely due to the number of committed youth voters; however, this year the youth turnout on various campuses has not been as enthusiastic.

    “I think this year people already know what they want and what they stand for,” said Mae-Ann Hazen, a student at Forsyth Technical Community College in North Carolina. “I know a lot of people who have already voted so there is no need to keep passing out buttons and flyers all the time.”

    But mainly, early voters came to a consensus that voting early makes it easier for them and it makes them believe their candidate has a better shot than voting on Election Day.

    Hazen said, “I really think it will show what we care about as a state from the turnout of early voters. Whether they are Democratic, or Republican or whatever, the more support there is early on the better.”

    The writer, a North Carolinian, is a senior in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications

     
  • E-News U. Contributor 8:25 am on November 6, 2012 Permalink |
    Tags: Alphonso Jackson, Black Republicans, , , , Stacey Dash   

    Black Republicans mute their identity on Hampton U. campus 

    By Kendra Johnson

    In the months leading to the 2012 presidential election, nothing seemed to be a higher form treason in the black community than the announcement that one of its members would be voting for Republican candidate Mitt Romney.

    Some of those who announced their support of the GOP candidate received high levels of scorn and derision from their racial cohorts. Both rapper Nicki Minaj and actress Stacey Dash received a fair amount of backlash via social networks after they openly endorsed candidate Romney.

    The tension that surrounded both Minaj and Dash’s announcements sparked discussions of should the black community continue to support President Barack Obama because of racial obligation or should they support him because he is truly the better candidate. Present in many conversations was the idea that to be a Republican in the black community is taboo, especially in this election cycle.

    “I know there are black Republicans out there,” Hampton University senior Alexis Glears said. “I personally don’t know too many, I probably don’t know any now that I think about it. All the [black] Democrats I know don’t seem to have a problem talking about their political party, I guess I’m just never around to hear a Republican talk about their views.”

    The Silver Spring, Md. native said she is not surprised that she doesn’t know any black Republicans because she is sure their lifestyles differ drastically.

    “When I think of Republicans I think of snobby, rich people,” Glears said. “I mean not always, but that’s what being a Republican has come to be associated with. When I think of black Republicans I think of rich black people who probably forgot they were black anyway. Being a Republican doesn’t make the person a sell-out in their community, forgetting that they’re a part of that community does.”

    Glears said while she does not understand why someone would vote for the Republican candidate this election cycle she is mindful that everyone is entitled to their opinion.

    “It’s not like it’s a crime to be a Republican, she said. “People can do what they want. It just seems weird to think of a black person being one. The Democratic Party just seems to be better suited for us.”

    Graduate student Ashley Pauling from Greenville, S.C.? said in this election she cannot understand why someone would vote for Romney, but she thinks people are getting caught up on the candidate rather than the party.

    “People seem to forget that once upon a time the Republican Party was the party black people favored,” she said. “Personally, I think Romney is an awful choice for president, but the entire Republican Party isn’t the bad guy.”

    Pauling said she thinks black people view being a Republican as taboo because they lack true knowledge of each party’s platform. She also said that she thinks a person’s environment dictates their political affiliation.

    During the election cycle, there was little talk about Republicans on campus and even less Republican propaganda seen.

    One HU political science professor, who preferred to remain off the record, said he is a Republican but would not share his views around campus because he is sure he would incite a riot.

    I addition, a few Hampton students interviewed for this article initially said they were Republicans then vehemently denied the affiliation when told the article was for publication.

    As recently as last spring prominent Republican Alphonso Jackson, former secretary of Housing and Urban Development for President George W. Bush, was director of the campus Center for Public Policy and Leadership. He is now a vice chairman of mortgage banking at JP Morgan Chase.

    “One thing I’ve noticed since being at Hampton is a mob mentality and that’s probably true for a lot of HBCUs or colleges in general,” Pauling said. “I think students here and people in the general [black] community are scared to say they support the Republican Party because they don’t want to upset people, but with anything you have to do your own research and decide why you believe what you believe then stand behind it.”

    The writer is a senior in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications

     
  • E-News U. Contributor 1:34 pm on November 5, 2012 Permalink |
    Tags: 2012 election, students, voting   

    Fueled with optimism, two student’s long trip home to vote 

    By Erica Blackburn

    New York City has become a home for Vashti Little, a senior at St. John’s University in Queens, N.Y.

    New York City has everything that she needs that she rarely, if ever, goes home to Washington D.C. But on Tuesday, Nov. 6, she will make an exception.

    As well all know, the polling places across the country will be filled with eager, excited citizens waiting to let their words and opinions be heard on Nov. 6. Vashti Little will be one of them. But her trek from New York to Washington D.C. won’t be an easy task. “If I drive, it takes about $40 alone for tolls,” said Little. “If I take the bus, there is always traffic so I would be on the road for hours.”

    But that hasn’t stopped Little from making the trip. “I’m not well versed on the issues New Yorkers face,” said Little. “I would prefer to go home where I know the people who will benefit from re-election.”

    Little said she was suspicious about absentee voting, citing that she has heard horror stories about it and wants her first time voting to be the “traditional way.”

    Another student in Alabama has the same problem. Delonta Boyd, senior at Talladega College, is expecting to vote, but not in Alabama. “

    “Alabama bleeds red,” says Boyd. “Red, meaning, Republican, so I know my voice will be muffled here. That’s why I’m going home to vote in Maryland where most of the districts there are voting ‘blue’.”

    Boyd’s trip would involve traveling through three states before reaching his home state in Maryland. Although he is not looking forward to the trip, he is looking forward to voting and convincing his family to vote.

    “This is my first time voting and hopefully, my parents will be voting for the first time,” said Boyd. “ I want to be able to share this moment with my parents and show them how imperative it is for all citizens to make their voices be heard, regardless of who they plan on voting for.”

    Boyd said that he was very optimistic about our future, but only if Obama is re-elected.

    Little said, “I’m hopeful but not optimistic about the country’s future. I think it will be a while before we see the change everyone is waiting for.”

    Although both students aren’t clear about how their futures will pan out, one thing is for sure: voting in a place where they know their voices will be heard is the first step in the right direction.

    The writer is a senior in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications

     
  • E-News U. Contributor 8:07 am on November 5, 2012 Permalink |
    Tags: Absentee ballots, Florida, , Ohio,   

    Absentee voting: Out-of-town Hampton U. students mail it in 

    By Brian Sprowl

    With Election Day just days away, students on the Hampton University campus are set to hit the polls strong throughout the day on Tuesday, Nov. 6. But some students won’t have to make those trips to the polls because they have already voted via absentee ballot.

    The process of absentee voting is convenient for those who cannot make it back home to the places they are registered to vote, so instead they vote by sending in a ballot through the mail. The process is basically the same as what will take place on Election Day, except that absentee voting is paper instead of electronic.

    While some students opted to change their state of registration to Virginia so that their votes could be counted in one of the top battleground states, some students decided to just vote early with absentee ballots.

    Kadeem Russell, a junior chemical engineering major from Cape Coral, Fla,. is one of those that decided to vote absentee.

    “I decided to vote absentee instead of changing my registration to Virginia because it was an easier process in my opinion,” said Russell, “and less paperwork since I was already registered in Florida.”

    Like Virginia, Florida is one of the battleground states that could significantly impact the election being that it carries 29 electoral votes. An article published by CNN last week showed the race in Florida to be neck and neck with each candidate holding slight leads in the different polls conducted, with margins for error.

    Jared Smith, a junior aviation major from Cincinnati, also voted absentee, this time for slightly different reasons.

    “Since Ohio is a battleground state, I decided to vote absentee because my vote would matter just as much there as it would here,” said Smith.

    Smith is indeed right, as Ohio is very much up for grabs. In the same CNN article from last week, results from various polls show that President Barack Obama holds a slight lead over candidate Mitt Romney. Ohio carries 18 electoral votes in the election.

    In a race as close as this one is projected to be, all votes will matter no matter where they are cast.

    The writer is a junior in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications

     
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