In off-year elections like this year, students usually do not vote. This year’s election is crucial for many reasons, however, especially for women.
If you have any questions about what I am going to say, check voting records rather than propaganda to see what incumbent candidates support. Even though there are more registered Democrats than Republicans in some districts, Republicans have a super majority in the Indiana state legislature due to gerrymandering of districts carried out after Democrats stayed home in the 2010 off-year election. Women’s rights are therefore highly endangered in Indiana, which ranks something like 48th among states in that regard. To fully understand the danger, Texas is a good example, where there has been a concerted effort by law to keep women from voting and now most clinics that focus on women’s reproductive health (not just abortion) have been closed. Republicans have consistently voted against access to any contraception method for women, women’s voting rights, gay marriage, student loans, food stamps, welfare, health care for those who have trouble paying for it, young people being able to stay on their parents’ health care plan longer (these two last issues are largely remedied by Obamacare), education funding and students’ voting rights. Indeed, our District 60 state representative, Republican Peggy Mayfield, introduced in the state legislature a bill to prohibit students from voting. The more students don’t vote, the more Republicans will win is her thinking. Nor do she and other Republicans want jobs that might be filled by present students to stay in Indiana. Richard Mourdock as state treasurer brought a lawsuit to stop the federal government from bailing out Chrysler. Gov. Pence and Gov. Daniels both refused to accept federal money to expand Medicaid, thus insuring that our tax dollars go to other states and poor Hoosiers do not get adequate health care. Meanwhile, there are, on the Democratic side, many reasonable candidates who are interested in fair, inclusive and efficient government that does not discriminate against women, minorities, gays, the poor, the young, the old (good health care is especially needed for young people without insurance and the elderly). So women and men, VOTE for progress, not inequality and discrimination! If you haven’t registered in Bloomington, vote in your own districts — make your voices heard!