As the nation prepared to head to the polls on Nov. 8 to vote for their state’s next representatives and senators in Congress, the Montclair State University community highlighted the importance of exercising this civic duty.
Many have expressed that these votes are the voices of the masses asking for a change in the United States.
Javier Escobar, a senior economics major, shared why he believes voting is significant.
“I feel it’s a way for you to directly impact yourself,” Escobar said. “You’re voting for the people who will represent you on broad issues and who will help create solutions.”
Escobar also voiced his support for women’s right to an abortion.
“I hope New Jersey stays as a place for women to be able to get access to abortions,” Escobar said.
Quran Butler, a freshman theatre studies major, said he is not able to vote, however he believes it is crucial to have your own political views.
“As students at this age, we should have political views and opinions,” Butler said. “[We] need opinions in order to create a change.”
International student Jiwon Kim, a senior business administration major, said she sees voting as a service.
“If [you’re of] eligible age or are registered to vote, you should because you are doing your job on behalf of yourself and others in the United States,” Kim said. “We have to do what we have to do.”
Kim is from South Korea and earlier this year she was able to vote for a presidential candidate from her home country at the U.S. Embassy in New York while living here.
Montclair State alumna Meyra Ventura, who graduated with a degree in child advocacy and policy, said voting is extremely important and shared some of her personal beliefs that influence her to vote.
“You have a choice,” Ventura said. “Everyone deserves a choice. I’m pro-life, I’m a Christian. People who don’t take responsibility could end up with STDs and unwanted pregnancies. In some cases, people use abortions as excuses for their mistakes. There are other ways of dealing with an unwanted child. You have to be aware of the consequences.”
New Jersey has 12 congressional districts. Montclair resides in the 10th and 11th congressional districts. In the 10th district, Donald Payne Jr. is running as a Democrat and David Pinckney is running as a Republican. In the 11th district, Mikie Sherrill is running as a Democrat and Paul DeGroot is running as a Republican.
New Jersey will not be voting for a senator until 2024 as the current senators have not finished their terms.