Gore to swing by ISU campus

Wendy Weiskircher

In the final days before the presidential election, Democratic candidate Al Gore will stop at the ISU campus Friday afternoon in an attempt to gain the student vote.

“It’s really important that the young people in this state recognize how important this election is to their future,” said Lt. Gov. Sally Pederson during her visit to Ames Tuesday afternoon.

Gore and his wife Tipper will be in Ames Friday on a last-week campaign rally south of the Campanile. Gates will open at 11 a.m., and the program will begin at 11:45 with entertainment provided by the local band The Nadas.

Debbie Kattenhorn, president of the ISU Democrats, said Iowa is a “battleground state,” and its votes are important to both Gore and Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush.

“It’s a state that is really still in play for both candidates,” said Kattenhorn, senior in political science. “A lot of students are apathetic about this election, but this shows that Gore really does care.”

Pederson said Gore’s stop so close to the election shows the value placed on Iowa’s electoral votes.

“We’re at a time in the election when every vote is important, and we want to be sure people understand there’s a distinct difference in the policies of the candidates,” she said. “Even though we just have seven electoral votes, they’re important votes for both Gore and Bush.”

Rep. Jane Greimann, D-Ames, said students, with their education and environmental awareness, should choose a candidate that will meet their needs and ideals.

“Students need to realize that they can make a difference in the election,” she said. “I don’t think it is in the best interest of a public institution under a Bush presidency.”

She said Iowa’s votes may tip the scale in favor of the winner.

“I can’t quite believe this, but I think Iowa is going to be a very pivotal state,” Greimann said. “We all have to step up and vote and get our friends to vote.”

Gore’s choice to stop at Iowa State along his final campaign trail emphasizes the importance of the student opinions, said Gore supporter Andy Tofilon.

“I think it shows how important Iowa is in the overall scheme of things,” said Tofilon, junior in journalism and mass communication. “How Iowa State votes and how Iowa State thinks is influential in the entire state.”