Students must vote to be heard

Low student turnout in the DFL primaries shouldn’t carry over to election day.

by Daily Editorial Board

After the DFL primaries Tuesday, the media and experts have already declared Kari Dziedzic the new state senator representing District 59. But itâÄôs important everyone keep in mind her victory only gets her on the ballot. The real election is Jan. 10 against Republican Ben Schwanke. The primaries didnâÄôt show much promise for student participation. Just 50 votes were cast in Coffman Union and 32 in Dinkytown. Not everyone who attends the University lives within District 59. But less than 100 potential student voters is embarrassing. This election is a chance for students to feel empowered. The candidate who wins in January will represent you while youâÄôre in school. Leading up to the election, candidates say theyâÄôll represent students at the Capitol. But will they represent people who donâÄôt even vote? Students are what makes this area diverse, and weâÄôre seen as potential workers who will rev MinnesotaâÄôs economic engine. But we have to vote to be heard and taken seriously. Individually, your vote matters because Dziedzic won the election by about 300 votes. But it also matters as a group, because no matter who you vote for or who wins, elected officials should know theyâÄôre accountable to students as much as any other demographic. We want our representatives to see the responsibility they have in bringing our point of view to St. Paul during the legislative session âÄî to consider us when looking over funding requests from the University of Minnesota and Minnesota State Colleges and Universities; to fight for us when issues like jobs, debt, the environment and gay rights come across their desk. Many assume students donâÄôt care about whatâÄôs going on outside of themselves. We must prove them wrong.