Student cast votes for change

This year’s midterm election is on Nov. 8 and students are watching closely and hope the change will come on key issues. Typically, midterm elections have lower turnout than presidential elections according to the Pew Research Center. The 2018 midterm election has the most votes cast in any midterm election.

Early voting in the state of Texas shows low turnout among 19-29-year-olds this year but students at WT are showing interest in this midterm election. Students like Denisse Marquez, a junior English major say voting will help start change.

“I feel like now that especially my generation, we’re able to vote, we’ve been seeing a lot of instances that we’re finally able to change with voting,” Marquez said. “A lot of us can finally utilize that to make change happen.”

A top issue in students’ minds is gun violence after the Uvalde school shooting in May that killed 19 students and two teachers. Students like Emily Goebel, a junior English major says gun violence is the top issue why they decided to vote.

“I know a lot of people are coming together, like crossing party lines to vote on gun violence,” Goebel said. “ I just feel like it’s an important election and I decided to vote.”

Goebel and Marquez hope to change to prevent gun violence in Texas. Just this past month, Marquez changed her major from English education.

“The reason I initially left that was because of gun violence that there is in schools,” Marquez said. “So seeing that there are people that are passionate about changing that was the main reason.”

Polls have shown Americans’ top issues are the economy, crime and abortion rights. Students have pointed out the overturning of Roe vs Wade in June and Texas immediately took steps to ban abortion access in the state encouraging them to vote this election cycle.

In recent polls, in the gubernatorial race, Republican incumbent Governor Greg Abbott is leading in the polls against Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke. According to FiveThirtyEight, Abbott’s lead is an average of 51% over O’Rouke’s 42% average.

In the United States Congress, polls show Republicans are expected to take control of the House of Representatives while the U.S Senate is a toss-up with Democrats fighting to maintain control. Many senate racing in Arizona, Pennsylvania, Georgia and Nevada will decide which party will control the Senate.

According to NBC News, Democrats will maintain control of the Senate after calling the Nevada Senate race to incumbent Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto. In the House of Representatives, Republicans are on track to winning the majority with a margin of error of +/- 3 seats. In the Texas Governor’s race, Gov. Greg Abbott won re-election against Democrat Beto O’Rourke by 11 points.

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