Election Day: Make or Break for America part 2

President Donald Trump and Joe Biden have different views on political policies. 

Claire Hoppe

Meehan said another community that will be greatly affected in the next four years by the incoming president is women. She said if Biden is elected, that will mean Kamala Harris will be the country’s first female vice president. When asked what this would mean for American women, Meehan said this is a turning point in our country.

“I was reading this study once, it was the majority of women who ever consider running for a political office don’t because they think either no one’s going to support them or they think they’re not worthy,” Meehan said. “It’s this internalized … impostor syndrome I guess.”

Faheem explained she thinks more women are going to grow more comfortable in running for political positions. Kedrowski said she thinks it is important for women to see people that look like them in power and authority. Kedrowski also said having a female vice president could change the future of other governmental roles.

“For one thing, vice presidents often run for president,” Kedrowski said.

Hurley offered a different perspective and said he believes Harris will be in a larger leadership role due to the lack of leadership qualities in her running mate. 

“Kamala Harris would be the first female president if [Biden] was elected because I don’t think Biden can lead at all,” Hurley said.

However, Kedrowski said no matter what role Harris will play during the next four years, it’s important to have the voice of women at a key decision-making table.

“I’m sure that she would be there advocating not only for the issues of women, but for intersectional issues for women of color, for people of color,” Kedrowski said.

Women’s reproductive rights are in dire need of advocacy, Meehan and Faheem said. When asked about what could be expected of Amy Coney Barrett as a Supreme Court justice, Meehan and Faheem said they are worried.

“It’s really scary because I think there’s a lot of work that’s been done in the last 50 years for women’s reproductive rights and just health care rights in general, and, unfortunately, it could all be overturned pretty fast because the Supreme Court has such power over the whole country,” Meehan said. 

Meehan also said she is especially concerned for Iowa women because Planned Parenthoods have already experienced a large amount of defunding. Faheem said she has concern specifically about the case of Roe v. Wade being overturned.

“I’ve heard stories from older women I know … talking about the time before Roe v. Wade, and it is scary. If somebody is in a dire need for an abortion, they will go get one, and if there’s not a safe practice in place, they’ll go to an unsafe practice,” Faheem said. “They’ll end up hurting themselves, and I think that we’ll see a big rise in that if Roe v. Wade ends up being overturned.”

Kedrowski said she’s more concerned about the Affordable Care Act being overturned. There are many women’s rights, such as employers providing mothers a place to nurse in the workplace, making birth control a covered medication and making sure women aren’t paying more for health care than their male counterparts, Kedrowski said. 

While many others are apprehensive about Barrett being in a place of power, Hurley said there is no reason to be worried.

“She [Amy Coney Barrett] is a fantastic family and career woman. I think she’s a model to young women,” Hurley said.

Kedrowski offered an objective perspective by stating no one can be sure how Barrett will act until she faces big decisions on the court.

“We have seen many number of Supreme Court justices who were expected to behave one way, and when they were placed on the court, ended up building quite a different reputation,” Kedrowski said.

Another issue Iowa State students and staff said is crucially important is how the next president will handle and combat the rise of COVID-19 cases during the next four years. 

“Regardless of who gets into office, we’re going to see a lot of challenges battling COVID-19 going forward because so much of handling a pandemic is containment,” Faheem said. “And because containment has to happen early, and we haven’t had a big, early push to contain the virus, it’s spread rapidly all over the country. So now we have to react to it instead of prevent it.”

Discussing what we can expect if reelected from Trump, Hassid said he doesn’t think there wouldn’t be any change in regards to COVID-19, however, Hurley explained the Trump administration has done a good job dealing with COVID-19 in regards to immigration. 

“You look at what’s happened with illegal immigration in COVID-19, and it’s gone down 92 percent,” Hurley said. 

Hurley said he thinks most COVID-19 cases are the result of immigrants illegally passing the border into America.

However, Faheem focused on the differences of how COVID-19 has been handled versus other viruses in the past. 

“In previous large-scale viruses, we’ve had a huge international response. … With Ebola, we went into that certain area and contained it there … With this one, we didn’t have that, and I think a big part of that that we don’t talk about is our international relationships have deteriorated to the point that we’re not really working with our allies,” Faheem said.

In order to make a change in America for the next four years, Hassid strongly urges everyone to vote, while Kedrowski added it’s important to vote for your local elections as well. 

“The next president will be making very important decisions about our relations with other countries, about our trade deals, whether or not to continue tariffs … what kind of environmental regulations the United States will have,” Kedrowski said. “So all of these have a big impact on the Iowa economy, given its dependence on agriculture.”

Hurley said when voting, people should vote conservatively in this election. 

“You may not agree with Trump on everything, you can’t say that he’s doing a fantastic job,” Hurley said. “If you want an America you can be proud of, and America where its people are put first rather than corporate interests, you want to vote Republican.”

Faheem, however, suggested that when people vote in this election they should vote for people that represent them in office.

“I feel like it’s important for every person to care about the people who are representing them in office because if you’re not going voting, if you’re not actively engaged, they’re not really representing you necessarily,” Faheem said.

In conclusion, Kedrowski said, each vote is equally important and makes a difference.

“As I heard somebody very succinctly put it, you know, it’s the time when all of our voices are the same,” Kedrowski said.