On the day Senator John Kerry conceded the election to President George W. Bush, the UR community had mixed feelings regarding Bush’s re-election.

“I hate it because I don’t like Bush,” freshman Erin Fox said. “I voted Kerry. I was very unhappy. In fact, I cried.”

Fellow freshman Samantha Lewis agreed but felt it was time to move on. “I think it is extremely disappointing,” Lewis said. “But clearly the majority of this country feels [Bush] is and will continue to be a good leader. I just hope that he can do something this time to prove to the rest of us that he really is.”

However, other students were less optimistics. Freshman Nate McBean agrees with Lewis. “1,529 more days of terror,” McBean said.

Several students cite Bush’s short-sighted policies, as well as his history of favoring the wealthy, increasing the national debt and lowering the job market and economy among his faults.

On the other hand, many students saw the re-election very positively and are certain that Bush will be able to win the war on terror and seal up the ends that were loose at the end of his first term.

“I’m excited with the results of the election and that Bush is going to be our president for the next four years,” freshman Sara Ancello said. “He is a strong leader who I feel has been doing the right things for our country and I feel safer knowing he is our president.”

Meanwhile, sophomore Ezekiel Allen was surprised that there was a definitive result so soon. “I’m very very happy since I’m pro-Bush,” Allen said. “I’m surprised though that Kerry conceded – I thought it was going to get dragged out.”

Others just pointed out the inadequacy of both candidates. “I don’t like either candidate, but I think unlike four years ago, it was actually fair,” senior Erika Rodger said.

“If the Democrats had honestly expected to win, they should have put up a better candidate than Kerry,” sophomore Trina Schattenkirk said.

Meanwhile, others were still undecided about the two candidates. “I just see the nation divided and I think that’s sad,” junior Eric Heinert said.

In Bush’s victory speech, he opened up to Kerry voters hoping to bring unity to the nation. “One future that binds us and when we come together and work together, there is no limit to the greatness of America,” Bush said. UR students are hopeful that he will stay true to his word.

“I hope now that the election’s over, there will be an end to divisiveness in our country,” junior Ryan Campell-Massa said.

Other students were disappointed that the real issues were not discussed in the lead up to voting. “It seems from exit polls that people are voting based on moral values,” junior Dave Ladon said. “Which means character, but also gay marriage and abortion. I feel these social issues are distracting from the fact that public policy is being enacted to support the corporations and elite rather than the American public.”

Continuing, he said, “It’s a sad day when a politician has to deceive the American people to gain power. They both did it, but I think Bush is worse. I also think Kerry should have had the votes counted.”

On the issue of voting, most people were impressed by the number of voters that voted in this election. “Clearly, students have been paying attention to the election,” political science professor Bonnie Meguid said. “There has been much research done on the lasting effect that a young voter’s first election experience has on his or her propensity to ‘turn out.’ I hope that this contentious election has made students excited about politics and about being part of the political process.”

“I was impressed by the interest the elections have generated,” Chair of the political science department Gerald Gamm said. “Students carefully followed the election. In my classes there was widespread discussion. I hope this showed students that votes do matter and elections are close.”

Gamm, like Kerry, believes that the citizens should unite to move on for the better of the nation. “Coming together after the election is part of its ritual,” Gamm said. “Everybody in the country should wish President Bush well and wish him success. To the extent that we disagree, we should continue to fight as citizens for what we believe in.”

Additional reporting by

Leland Aldridge

and James Ng.

Paret can be reached at

eparet@campustimes.org.



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