Letter to the editor: Obama working hard to secure future and rights

Andrew Nguyen

As co-founder and vice president of the ISU College Democrats, politics and discussion are important to me. I enjoy discussing complex policy issues like the national deficit and taxes and was surprised when I couldn’t answer my aunt’s very simple question. She asked why people my age voted for Barack Obama. I remember mumbling something about economic stimulus but left the conversation wondering what Obama had done for my friends and me.

I looked immediately toward the most pressing issue in my life, post-graduation plans. As a graduating senior, my life is filled with uncertainty: What will I do after I graduate? Where will I live? Will I have a job? But the one thing that made me feel safe was the fact that thanks to the Affordable Care Act, I am now able to stay on my parents’ health insurance plan until I turn 26. No longer will I have to take a job or stay in school just to have health insurance.

Many are fighting to repeal Obamacare. Our own congressman, Steve King, wants to repeal it, saying: “It’s all got to go — pull it all out by the roots.” This includes repealing my peace of mind. Barack Obama helped lend certainty to my future.

I also thought about my little brother. He really wants to attend Iowa State, but Iowa State graduates already owe an average of $29,455 in student debt. During his first term, Obama doubled government investments in scholarships and financial aid so people like my brother could attend school without being crushed by debt. He did this by ending taxpayer subsidies to banks and then used those savings to make it easier for students to repay their federal student loans.

Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan want to cut funding and remove government regulations, like the cap on monthly student loan payments. Unlike Romney and Ryan, Obama is fighting to secure my family’s future.

I also thought about my gay friends in Ames, whose rights are continually being threatened by politicians who don’t want them to work in public schools, serve openly in the military or enjoy a happy marriage. Obama ended “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and came out in support of gay marriage.

I thought about my female friends, whose reproductive systems are treated like government property. Obama invested in preventative care like pap smears and mammograms to better women’s health. Obama is fighting for the rights of my friends.

After a lot of thought and consideration, I can confidently tell my aunt why members of my generation voted for Obama in 2008 and why they’ll vote for him again in 2012. He fights to protect my rights and the rights of my friends. He fights to move America forward.