The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Don’t vote for best sales pitch

By Bethany Peterson/editor in chief

It’s that time again. Politicians across the country come to us begging shamelessly for our vote by promising us the moon.

After hours with their personal strategists rehearsing for debates, developing sentimental attacks and undermining other candidates, each one is armed with carrots to lure us into polls to vote for them.

All for a small but mighty reward.

About 45 percent of the voting population consistently votes Republican while another 45 percent votes Democratic. Each presidential candidate must eventually get 51 percent to win, so it is the middle 10 percent of “persuadable” voters candidates spend millions to influence, according to the Los Angeles Times.

College students are in the bull’s-eye for these persuasions.

Many of us reached voting age right before or after we started college. Most of us have little political affiliation beyond what our parents followed. We have paid or soon will pay taxes and want to see a return on our money. And our optimism can lead us to gullibility.

So this election season, a lot of talk about jobs and college funding is designed to attract us.

President Barack Obama talks about increasing the Pell Grant, growing the community college-to-work programs and reforming student loan programs. On the Republican side, Newt Gingrich supports work-study colleges that allow students to graduate without debt, and in Massachusetts, Mitt Romney started a full tuition scholarship for students who score high on exit exams.

But there are several things to bear in mind when choosing a candidate to support with your vote.

First, presidents can’t make all the changes they promise, really. They have some power through the bureaus and in promoting bills, but Congress really holds the reins and the money, making these “smaller” races for Congress just as important.

Second, the president’s job is much more than just reducing our college debt. He must be competent in international politics, understand economic and energy factors and have foresight reaching beyond his four to eight years in the White House.

So choose the candidate you think won’t lead the country into a nuclear war, not just the one who tickles your ear.

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