ELECTION WATCH: Pajama Politics
By Joseph Temblador, Editor-in-Chief
In the coming weeks, many Kennedy students, particularly those more involved in the finer points of state and national politics might notice their email spam seemingly overflowing with messages of varying political discourse, for this serves as a reminder that the Midterms are upon us. The 2018 House and Senate races are poised to spell a decisive year for Democrats and Republicans on either side of the aisle, as politicians fight for a place in one of 470 out of 535 available House or Senate seats. These midterms follow an abnormally divisive 2016 Presidential Election between Hillary Clinton and the incumbent Donald Trump, an election cycle that proved integral to American politics and policy as well as the way future campaigns will be run.
In past years conservatives and the Republican party have been endowed with higher voter turnout than their liberal counterparts, but many analysts expect a massive spike in Democrats coming to the polls following the 2016 presidential elections, cutting into a long standing Republican advantage. A Washington Post poll of 846 voters puts Democratic turnout at 65% of those registered, where as Republicans sit at a declining 63%, a low for the GOP and an abnormal high for Democrats (This poll accounts for a +/- 4 percentage points margin for error). This spike in voter turnout can be attributed to many stimulants, including displeasure with the previous presidential election and pleas by popular artists and actors to get out and vote. In a short video on comedy platform Funny or Die, Singer Katy Perry mused, “November 6th is Election Day and I’ve got some great news… This year, you can look like sh*t when you vote. Yep, I’ve briefly scanned the constitution and nowhere does it say you can’t just roll out of bed and come to the polls in whatever state you woke up in. In the name of democracy, any just-out-of-bed look is a-okay.”
The thing is, Katy is right, and not just whether you’re a conservative or liberal. In a country increasingly desensitized to inequity and political corruption on either side of the aisle, so many Americans have become disenfranchised with their political institutions. People don’t think their vote matters, but it does. That starts with Kennedy students. Many seniors are able, or will be able to vote, so do it. Like Katy joked; you can just roll out of bed in whatever you slept in, because Democracy doesn’t care how you look when you take part. It doesn’t matter where you’re from or how you were raised or how many people you think can or can’t hear your voice. All Democracy cares is that you take part, because that’s how Democracy thrives.