Political science department holds election forum to help inform students

The political science department held a pre-election forum on Oct. 30 in BS-129.

The event was presented by professors Daniel Aseltine, Elizabeth Huffman, Martin Morales and the Dean of Humanities and Social Science Tonya Williams. They touched on various topics such as the importance of voting, California races and increased diversity to a group of a hundred people.

“It’s important to do the event because I mean really, who understands their ballot completely? Who understands the implications of the election?” said Morales.

The event opened up with Morales thanking everyone for attending the event, then he proceeded to play a video “If Congress was your co-worker”, which demonstrated how voting can fix a broken congress.

The floor was then given to Aseltine, where he informed the audience of the various races in California such as the attorney general’s race, governor’s race, and senator’s race, along with explaining Propositions 6 and 10.

Williams then took the floor and addressed the crowd about how a vote can bring the issues that concern voters to the government and how California politics can tip the balance of power for any political party that gets the most representatives in the state.

After Williams, Huffman gave a speech about the increase diversification within the United States and that increased diversity has lead to more states balancing out between parties, instead of an entire state being mostly democrat or republican.

At the end of the forum, Morales came up to the front and talked about how he’s seen the country go in many different political directions, but noted that he doesn’t even recognize the country anymore and encouraged students to vote to see change enacted.

After all of the speakers had finished, they held a quick Q&A at the end.

Twenty-four-year-old International Relations major Thomas Gonzales said that he came to the event because he wanted to be informed by people who knew what they were talking about.

Gonzales said that he learned that the elections are “contentious.”

“It’s complicated,” Gonzales said. “I need to do a whole lot more research before I go out and vote.”

Inez Adams, a 52-year-old Human Services major, attended the event to learn more about the political prospects and to learn about what’s on the ballot.

Adams said that after attending the event, she gained a greater appreciation for participating in the political process.

“I learned that California is an awesome place to live,” said Adams. “Now that I learned how are our votes have national implications, it makes me want to vote even more.”