Because what motivates one voter might not affect another, many voters prioritize the social, family and financial issues that are most important to them. Staying informed on different sides of an issue gives perspective and a better understanding of different groups of people.
“Regardless of your personal reasons for being politically active, it is imperative that voters continue to educate themselves on the issues, and that they continue to dialogue thoughtfully with people who think differently than they do,” said government teacher Stacy Noble.
One of the institutions greatly impacted by the elections are schools. Schools depend on money from the state and national governments to offer certain classes, special programs and services students depend on. According to Jillian Baker ’19, a former campaign fellow for the Hillary Clinton campaign, some of the most important issues in this year’s election directly impact all types of students.
“I want to make sure that the new elects have the best interest of Iowa’s youth in mind,” Baker said. “This means better school funding and less discriminatory laws. For that reason, I want to advocate for the people who I think can best represent and stand up for not only populations like me, but for all populations.”
Many underage students, however, are unaware of just how interconnected the government is in their life. For example, the government affects the minimum wage students can earn at their jobs. It can also affect their ability to qualify for grants and loans for college.
“If you listed out your daily interactions and activities, there is likely an elected official that has made a decision impacting almost every one of those things directly or indirectly,” Noble said.
Many decisions made today will have long-lasting impacts on these students and the rest of the world tomorrow and for years to come.
“This is easily the most important midterm election of my lifetime and yours, too,” Wahls said. “If you care about climate change, gun safety reform, affordable higher education, investments in our K-12 system, access to abortion and contraception, being able to vote and protecting our immigrant communities, the stakes in this election couldn’t be higher.”