By Katie Peters, Emma Ingenohl & Kait Bedell – Editor-in-Chief & 1851 Staff
At 11:25 a.m. on November 7, four days after election day, The Associated Press called Joe Biden and Kamala Harris as the projected President-Elect and Vice President-Elect of The United States. Since the announcement, there has been significant push-back from the Trump Administration as well as the Republican Party. Before the polls opened, there was talk of fraudulent votes, curing and other ill practices.
As mail-in votes continued to be counted on election night, several key states including Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Georgia where President Donald Trump was previously leading, flipped in favor of Biden. The Trump Administration has subsequently opened numerous lawsuits in key states in an attempt to stop vote counting in certain cases, a move experts say will be futile in changing the results.
People from all over the Lasell community had a wide range of reactions to America’s new president-elect. Junior Julia Ricco based her vote on how the presidential debates went. “During the debates, I was just like… it has to be Biden. We can’t go through another four years of this,” she said.
Another Biden supporter, Associate Professor of Ethics Thomas Sullivan, usually keeps his political views quiet on social media until recent news broke. “This latest business of inviting legislators to the White House to see if we can overturn state elections… boy, that’s a really dangerous road to go down,” he said. “I actually posted something on Facebook saying, ‘In fact, it turns out somebody is trying to steal this election. And he wears bright red ties.’”
Senior Hannah Richards is an active participant in social advocacy and spoke to why she voted for Biden and Harris. “They care about equality, human rights, healthcare, they believe in science, and they are surrounded by compassionate and educated people who will make the best decisions for this country’s well-being,” she said.
Program Chair of Business Nancy Waldron has worked at Lasell for twenty years and believes a political divide is healthy within this country and at Lasell. Waldron considers herself a “dyed-in-the-wool liberal democrat” and is relieved to see a projected shift in office. She says, “I do think that rightwing perspective is on campus and people are entitled to their own opinions. For the people that back Trump and are conserva- tives in regards to their politics, that’s fine. But leave the hate out of it.”
For first-year Maeve Willerup, voting for Biden was an easy choice. Willerup has faith in the election results and said that now is a time for healing. “I voted for Biden because I think he will always put what is best for the future of America and Americans before any single agenda which is important now since we have never been this divided.”
First-year Julie Auld did not vote because she couldn’t vote in-person and did not feel as though voting by mail was secure enough. Despite Auld being a registered democrat, she was not happy about either candidate. “I thought I knew who I would vote for but after following the election process I am disturbed by the immaturity coming from both sides,” Auld said.
While some voters felt both candidates were bad choices, other students like first year Riley Bird said she felt like she was voting for change. “I felt like our country needed change,” Bird said. “Both candidates are
extremely controversial and I felt that it was a really tough first election to vote in.”
Bird is usually moderate and said depending on the election she could be persuaded to vote republican or democrat, but this year she felt Biden was the best option. “Joe Biden seems to me like he can do more for our struggling country right now, rather than just help it in the long run,” Bird said.
For others, Biden was not their first pick. Sophomore Jacob Malicki wanted to vote in-person but was unable to due to the pandemic. “I wanted to vote republican. Not Trump necessarily, but just the Republican Party,” he said. “I think finding the middle ground for both sides is what’s really important. I think the Republican Party offered a middle ground.”
Senior Parker Nathan voted for Trump because of the economy. “To me, it’s just about honestly, lockdowns and jobs. I own my own business… I felt that [Trump] was the best for that,” he said. “I just really hope Joe Biden the best.”
Junior Matt Motyka questions the authenticity of this election, as do many Republicans. “With the voting process taking longer I do feel a bit of anxiety because there have already been examples of voter fraud in certain states,” he said prior to Biden’s win. “Of course looking at every election there is the possibility that there are going to be some challenges, but this election is facing major questions.”
First-year Zach Parker said he felt Trump held the best policies and would preserve the constitution. “I voted for Trump because I looked past how he was acting and what he was saying on the media and what he was actually doing during his office,” Parker said.
States have continued to confirm their ballot counts as the election is now a month in the past and President Trump and his team have begun to work with Biden’s team on a transition.