Student groups rally to get peers to the polls

Emily Brink

To increase student turnout at the polls in today’s presidential and local elections, members of the ISU Student Environmental Council are rallying on central campus to educate students about the candidates’ stances on environmental issues.

Campus Green Vote is part of a nationwide campaign to increase awareness of effects of leadership on the environment. Today’s rally, which will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. south of the Campanile, is the culmination of two months of work by the Student Environmental Council, said Zach Herrnstadt, co-vice president of the council.

“We are celebrating that everyone has the right to vote,” said Herrnstadt, sophomore in English.

In addition to encouraging students to hit the polls, he said the council will have nonpartisan information about all of the candidates and their ideas on the environment, as well as precinct maps and information about the voting process.

“We are looking to get the word out to people that their vote is important,” Herrnstadt said. “No matter who they vote for, they are encouraged to vote.”

Katie Theisen, co-president of the Student Environmental Council, said the outcome of the election will have a major impact on the environment.

“We have a lot of big environmental issues with the election this year,” said Theisen, senior in environmental science. “It’s an important thing that students have to look at.”

Brian Anderson, president of ISU Libertarians, said he has noticed a general apathy toward the election among ISU students.

“Almost everyone I talk to seems like they don’t care,” said Anderson, sophomore in horticulture. “About one in 10 people take interest and seem to want to learn about the election and politics in general.”

The campus Libertarian group was on campus Monday distributing information about the party and the elections, Anderson said, because the student vote potentially can decide the outcome of the election.

“The student vote rally can decide who wins, especially in Iowa,” he said. “This being a swing state, we can really tip the vote one way or another, depending on if the students get out and vote.”

Herrnstadt said he hopes ISU students will hit the polls and make a difference in the country’s leadership.

“We hope we can get people to go to the polls with the environment in mind,” he said.