LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Voting matters
November 6, 2015
As the vice chairs of the Simpson College Republicans and Democrats groups, we both care deeply about political involvement on campus. On Nov. 8, the 2016 election will be exactly a year away. Two important truths: You don’t need to be an expert in politics to vote, and young people could realistically swing the election. We wanted to give students a few reminders:
– Register (or re-register) to vote. Unless you didn’t move at all this year, you must re-register. Simpson’s campus covers several precincts, so where you vote and where you caucus is determined using your current address. Contact us or any member of Simpson Votes and we can get you registered in less than 5 minutes.
– Ask questions. If you don’t know your political affiliation, feel free to attend meetings of both the Republicans and the Democrats. The clubs are not focused on any one candidate and members will be happy to help you figure out what candidate best fits your goals for the future of the U.S. There are also sites like the “I Side With” 2016 Presidential Election Quiz that can help. Both groups have contacts with Iowa field organizers for the different candidates, so if you’re interested in volunteering for a specific candidate, we can help make that happen. (Most also offer internships!)
– Meet the candidates. Our groups, along with the Culver Center, are working hard to bring candidates to Indianola in the coming months. Even if you’re new to politics or the candidate doesn’t match your ideology, the rallies and speeches are still fun to attend and informative. If they don’t make it to Indianola, they will certainly be in Des Moines or the surrounding area. Because we live in Iowa, it is not out of the question for voters to meet every candidate, some more than once. SC Republicans and SC Democrats both attend events and dinners, often with special access to candidates.
– Caucus. Your preferred candidate needs your support to help win the Iowa Caucus on February 1st. Iowa has one of the loudest voices in the country when it comes to defining the presidential race. In order to caucus, you must be registered as either a Democrat or a Republican and can only participate in the respective caucus. (You can also change your party affiliation through Simpson Votes.) Mock caucus dates and information will come out soon, so first time caucus-goers can figure out the process before the real deal.
The government affects your life every day. Voting is your chance to elect who makes those decisions. Let us know if you need help in any of these endeavors!