Geneseo Votes encourages political activism, provides election information

On Tuesday Nov. 6 from 12-3 p.m., Democracy Matters hosted Geneseo Votes in the Union Ballroom. It was an event that allowed a variety of student organizations to provide information regarding Election Day and encouraged students to vote.

Organizations in attendance included Geneseo Invisible Children, Geneseo Environmental Organization, The Lamron and Student Association.

SA gave students information about legal services that are provided by their student activity fees and promoted voting.

SA Director of Student Affairs senior Sadie Baker said, “I think that voting is particularly important this year because one of the candidates wants to move the country forward, and one who wants to move us back.”

The Geneseo Invisible Children table provided information on the presidential candidates’ views on KONY 2012.

Senior Audrey Schiffhauer of Geneseo Invisible Children said, “I don’t think you are allowed to complain or disagree with what’s going on in America if you didn’t vote.”

GEO provided information on environmental issues to take into consideration when voting.

Democracy Matters gave students a chance to take an online survey on to see which candidates best fit their interests on a variety of issues.

They also focused on helping students get involved with local politics by providing information about local candidates from the State Assembly, the House of Representatives and the Senate. At the Democracy Matters table, students were able to sign postcards addressed to State Sen. Patrick Gallivan asking for campaign finance reform.

Democracy Matters President senior Nicholas Sloper said, “Most students who register [to vote] in Geneseo don’t pay attention to local politics.”

Sloper added that Geneseo Votes was also created to direct students where to vote, since most do not know where to go. At the end of the event, there was a “March to the Polls” so that all interested students could walk together to cast their votes.

One student voter, freshman Nicole Bergamo, said that she felt that voting is important because “you need to take an active part in deciding the path your government should take. And we are lucky enough to have a functioning democracy, so we should take advantage of it.”

“Without voting there is no democracy, and what is America without democracy,” Sloper said.