There’s an old aphorism, “Figures don’t lie but liars figure.” Many news agency polls leading up to this year’s presidential election magnify each leading candidates’ divisive attitude, focused on how bad the country is going to be if the opposing candidate wins the election. These polls and the leading presidential candidates are missing two key things: People are voting out of fear and they want to hear the candidates talk about key issues.
A recent Pew Research Center poll shows that more than half of potential voters are doing so out of fear. Many of Montgomery County Community College students feel the same way.
Jennifer Zera, a 29-year-old Human Resources student, says she’s voting for Donald Trump because Hillary Clinton is not trustworthy. “She lies and she only appears interested in topics when she is trying to earn votes.”
Brianna Johnston, a Business student, 34, fears for the popularity of Clinton’s opponent. “Trump is bringing our country’s problem with hate and bigotry out into the open,” she says.
Reina Paredes, a 20-year-old accounting student, who says she’s supporting Green Party Candidate Jill Stein, doesn’t like the Democratic Party nominee. “Hillary [is] a criminal and [a] liar who takes money from Wall Street.”
Gail Clark, a Nursing student in her sixties, feels that Trump’s behavior could induce more fear. “[He] attacks women and non-Americans.” What disturbs Clark most is that the candidates don’t “focus on the main problems in our country.”
Michael Malley, another Nursing student, 35, who also says he’s voting for Jill Stein, wishes the candidates would have a more “long-term focus” on all levels of education, from grade school to college.
Katherine Bampfield, a 51-year-old Web
Development and Design student, wants the future president to talk about immigration reform, job creation and “how to decrease some of our cost of living.”
Victoria Esten, an Accounting student, 31, wants to see issues from equal pay rights for women, to the economy to healthcare and schooling discussed. She says, “I’m sick and tired about talking about Trump’s wanting to see Obama’s birth certificate or Clinton’s e-mail scandal. Can we get on with things and get to the issues at hand?”
The polls’ statistics and figures may not be wrong but they aren’t concentrating on the key factors that are important to Montco’s students, much less the country. The sooner news media organizations and, more importantly, this year’s presidential candidates start talking about the issues instead of ignoring them, the more likely voters won’t have to vote out of fear.