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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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One step away
June 8, 2024

If you want change, vote local

Rejoice, rejoice, election season is over, and like all hurricanes, this one battered and whipped banners with gale-force winds. Well pack up those banners and leave all the Facebook groups, because for another year you will not have to cast a ballot for someone vying to bring change to this campus. 

Except for one more vote. Well, two to be exact. The primary and general elections for our other representatives — the local and state politicians that have so much say over your Aggie experience. 

Last week, 15,000 students voted for a new Student Body President. The mayor of College Station was elected in 2013 with 3,276 votes. In that election, of the 14,000 students who live on campus, only seven voted on election day. Seven students voted for an office that oversees your taxes and a $310 million annual city budget. 

There is civic energy on campus that is real and important that I won’t belittle. Almost every student is a member of one of the 1,300 organizations on campus that give back to the community in invaluable ways. Next month, 22,500 students will spend their Saturday morning serving at the Big Event. But somehow that civic energy, that desire to see things grow, doesn’t translate into students voting — possibly the biggest way you can affect change. 

By not showing up to vote we are squandering our chance to contribute significantly to the community. Yes, most of us will only be here for four years, but in that time we have the opportunity to change things that happen everyday.

If you disparage higher taxes (yes you pay taxes, they are priced into your rent and tuition), vote for somebody who will lower them. If you’re fine with higher taxes, and just want tax money spent in a better way, vote on propositions and bond measures that affect the city every day. Whatever you want to happen, vote for it. 

The cliché that every vote counts means so much more when no one else is voting. Your vote counts here and now more than it does anywhere else.

Of 105,000 people of voting age in College Station, Aggies are 60,000 of those. We outnumber the surrounding population so much that if all students were to vote, local elections would become a strictly campus affair. 

Today you can start that change by voting for who will represent the Republican and Democratic candidates in November for no less than eight judicial chairs, two state representative seats and three county commisionerships. Not to mention, the president of the United States. 

If you are a registered voter of Brazos County you can vote today in MSC 2406 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Just bring a valid state ID. If you are registered in your hometown, but plan on voting in November, consider registering in Brazos County, where it will be much easier to cast a ballot come November.

Spencer Davis is a finance junior and a columnist for The Battalion.

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