On Super Tuesday, the voices, actions of Yalies proved loud and powerful

To the Editor:

Amidst all the national coverage of Super Duper Tuesday, it is easy to lose track of the tremendous role that Yale students played, and the activist energy that has engulfed our university. Turnout on campus was phenomenal: 790 voters came to the polls in Ward 1, even more impressive given the fact that polling locations for four residential colleges switched. By our estimates, student turnout on campus stood at just over 70 percent — a statistic not seen since the bitterly contested aldermanic race in 2005.

Voting is vital for the health of our country, and, as an often-marginalized group, youth voters in particular must be sure to make their voices heard. With the margin of victory in Connecticut at 4 percent and with convention delegates awarded proportionally, every single vote counts.

But, as Victor Zapana’s article “Coffee, voter lists fuel students’ GOTV exports” (2/6) details, voter turnout is not the only development that Super Tuesday reveals. Yale students came out in huge numbers to work before and during the election. The amount of organization on this campus, be it for a specific candidate or not, shows that Yale students are not only politically interested, but are also politically motivated. Yale students who spend time discussing the finer points of politics and policies are unafraid, it seems, to get their hands dirty with the business of campaigning. This new kind of activism is one that unites our campus and strengthens our collective voice as citizens. It shows that we have recognized that this election can right our country’s path after eight years of wandering. It is my hope and belief that the spirit and energy displayed on Tuesday will not fade as we fight to November. Unified, students on this campus will continue to be a powerful force.

Ben Shaffer

Feb. 6

The writer is a junior in Berkeley College. He is the president of the Yale College Democrats.

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