SDSU students share election reactions, first-time voting experiences

The+Daily+Aztec+moderated+a+debate+between+SDSU+College+Democrats+and+TPUSA+at+SDSU+on+Oct.+28.+

Brenden Tuccinardi

The Daily Aztec moderated a debate between SDSU College Democrats and TPUSA at SDSU on Oct. 28.

by Jeanette Giovanniello, Senior Staff Writer

After four nights of waiting in wonder, the 2020 Presidential Election came to an end once the Associated Press called the race for former Vice President Joe Biden making him the projected winner on Nov. 7. 

In previous elections, college students have been the least active voting block in terms of turn out. This year, the demographic played a substantial role. The number of young voters surged, with 56% of 18- to 30-year-olds showing up to the polls, which is up 10% from the 2016 election.

Several San Diego State students spoke about their first time voting experience, and had mixed emotions about the results that came out of an unprecedented election saga.

While many were surprised to see traditionally red states turn blue, Skye Benson, environmental engineering sophomore, said she was surprised by Trump’s lead on Election Night.

“When the mass amount of red showed up it took me by surprise,” Benson said. “On social media, I’m seeing all left-sided points of view because that’s what the algorithm puts out for me. It was also a good refresher knowing that everyone has those different opinions and there are a bunch of people that are similar to me but also a lot of people different from me.”

Despite her vote for Biden and Kamala Harris, Benson said that they are not the “ideal candidates” and mentioned Biden’s sexual assault allegations and Harris’ criminal justice record.

“I’m not happy with (Biden) but I am happy he won,” Benson said. “They’re definitely not my top pick in what a candidate should be and what they should represent, but it was the more sensible choice between the two because they’re basically only were two options.”

Alex Sheron, a journalism sophomore, said he is happy with the election results and has optimism for the future.

“I think Biden and Harris will do a really good job at bringing the United States out of the hole that we dug ourselves into,” Sheron said. “I really enjoyed watching (Biden’s) victory speech, it just seems like he really cares and is going to represent all Americans and I feel like that’s something Trump didn’t really do.”

Sheron said he was disappointed at Trump’s claims of voter fraud but was “not surprised.” With the president still in disbelief, Sheron said he does not know what to expect next. 

“I feel like right now it’s kind of uncertain what Trump will do, but I’m hoping as a voter and as a citizen that he does the right thing and transfers the power to Biden,” Sheron said. “I don’t know how it’s going to play out, hopefully, the Supreme Court will be able to realize that it was just a fair honest election count.”

Nicholas Ebadat, a journalism sophomore, also does not believe the president’s claims of voter fraud. Ebadat is one of many who sent his vote in through the mail and verified that it was received.

“It’s very convenient for Trump to call the mail-in ballots fraudulent and not the ones in person, because everybody in person is voting for him, and the mail-in ballots are prioritized with voting for Biden,” Ebadat said.

Ebadat said he trusted the accuracy of the voter count and democratic process.

“I think it’s extremely concerning that the president of the United States has doubts about the election process that elected him,” Ebadat said. “If he calls the process inaccurate, then that also means that his election could have also been fraudulent.”

Ebadat also had a critique for the counting process during the pandemic, and compared the days of waiting to a “reality show.” 

“I think it would’ve been better if they just gave a deadline with all of the results and not show them counting,” Ebadat said. “Seeing the process added up the anticipation and made it more like a reality TV show instead of actually making it official.”

Despite the wait, Ebadat said that he believes the country is taking a step in the right direction and has high hopes.

“I think it’s a healing step for the country to take back things that Trump made that have deprioritized some groups in the country,” Ebadat said. “I think Biden is healing the country in a big way and that wouldn’t have been done if Trump was in the presidency.”

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