STORY BY ABBY CURRIE | CARTOONS BY ACE BRADLEY
With the election quickly approaching there is a chance of breaking down some tall, withstanding walls with the induction of a female U.S. president. However, according to USA Today/Rock the Vote’s poll, Democratic and Independent women between the ages of 18 and 34 favor Sen. Bernie Sanders by nearly 20 percentage points. Clinton, however, won the older demographic, winning women over 65 overwhelmingly.
Many women have the intention of putting the best presidential candidate in office, rather than voting for a woman to simply elect the first woman president. Senior Nicole Wiles thinks gender shouldn’t be a deciding factor for any voter. “I think our overall goal should be to have a good president in the White House regardless of if it’s a boy or a girl or a black person or a white person or an Asian. I don’t think it should matter who they are as long as they are a good, effective president,” Wiles said.
Sophomore Grace Burgin would like to see women have a breakthrough in politics only if that woman is the best choice. “I think for a lot of women it would just be kind of a breakthrough in politics because women have never been given completely equal opportunities. At the same time, I would only want her in office if I believed she would be the best choice.”
Burgin continued to explain how a woman president would affect her life personally. “To me, because I’m very interested in politics, now I have a chance. I know for sure I can go all the way up there, and it’s not just going to be a man’s world,” Burgin said.
Feminist Gloria Steinem accused young women of only supporting Sanders because they crave attention from young men, who also tend to lean toward Sanders. (Steinem has since apologized and revoked this statement.) Many Democratic women did not receive this statement well.
Junior Hannah Meckna, a Sanders supporter, found the statement to be ridiculous. “Women are complex individuals and care about much more than a man’s opinion of her,” Meckna said.
Meckna said she supports Sanders because his ideas align with hers. “I especially appreciate his opinions on the Black Lives Matter movement, LGBTQ+ equality, other feminist issues, and his plan to dismantle Wall Street,” Meckna said.
“He may be an old white man but he has good intentions at heart, and has had the same intentions for his whole political career”
Some students express they don’t particularly trust Hillary Clinton. Senior Vida-Michelle Nixon said Clinton may have presidential qualities, but in the end it all comes down to trust.
“I think she has the most experience of any of the candidates, Republican or Democrat. Unfortunately, I still don’t trust her, and I would want a president I could trust, at least when it comes to security,” Nixon said.
Nixon also said she liked Sanders’ ideas but questioned if Sanders would get the job done. “I am torn between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. I love his policies, but I don’t know if he’ll be able to implement them. Obama took a full two terms to get his head right. I believe with Hillary’s experience she could go faster, and get stuff done,” Nixon said.
Burgin contributes that she lacks trust in Clinton. “I feel like she changes a lot of her original opinions just to get voters, not because it’s what she actually believes,” Burgin said.
Senior Alexis Wonderly believes Clinton doesn’t have the right intentions in running and therefore doesn’t side with her. “I know every presidential candidacy they’re not proud of things we know of. I question it, because she ran in 2008 and she didn’t get far because of president Obama. I think she’s just doing it because she has the money to run,” Wonderly said.
Burgin believes Bernie would change the way politics work. “I think that younger women prefer Bernie because I feel like younger people in general are ready for a change in politics, and that’s what he’s really trying to do. He’s trying to take democracy and get rid of the corruption. I feel like older women are just looking for the best candidate to run the government we have right now, which I believe is Hillary, but Bernie is going to completely change how politics are.”