Whatcom pulls for higher voter turnout

By Apple Parry

The ASWCC is pushing for more students to vote in the November midterm elections.

They started the #aswccROCKthevote campaign, which involves students finding painted rocks around campus and posting pictures of the rocks on social media with the hashtag “#aswccROCKthevote.”

Whatcom voter registration is a key issue for ASWCC President Mason Green.

Another part of the ASWCC voting push is a partnership with the League of Women Voters, a non-partisan organization that “encourages active and informed participation in government,” according to their website.

Cam Kerst, a volunteer with the League of Women Voters, has been outside by the ballot box near Heiner Center, handing out stickers and pins, helping students to register to vote.

voting box

Ballot box by Heiner Center

“Young peoples’ voices are important,” Kerst said. “We need everybody to vote.”

Another volunteer, Paula Rotondi, was standing in the rain and talking to students about voting. “It’s the most important and powerful thing I can do,” Rotondi said about voting. “It’s the happiest thing I do all year.”

In 2014 during the midterm elections, the League of Women’s Voters gave out around 14,900 ballots to 18-24 year olds, but only around 4,450 people turned in their ballots.

Senior citizens, on the other hand, have a much higher voter turnout.

One of the reasons for low, youth voter turnout is that nobody knows where the ballot boxes are, Rotondi said.

Ballot boxes close at 8 p.m. on Election Day, which is on Nov. 6.

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