Q: How have members of your organization been reacting to the results of the election?
A: A lot of people are very upset of course, but for the most part people are trying to figure out what we do with the organization moving forward and what its best use is. Should we fold back into the [Yale College Democrats]? Should we work on supporting policy advocacy and issue advocacy like supporting the organizing that’s been happening to protect undocumented students on campus? I think we need to have a structured conversation as an organization to figure out where we want to go moving forward. I think we always figured that she would win and then we would reappear in a couple of years when it was time for the next election.
I was talking to my co-president last night and she said it was very weird not to have phone-banking on Tuesday because it was a part of our lives for so long, and now it’s just over. So it’s a feeling of loss.
Q: What are your primary concerns looking ahead?
A: I’m concerned that the Democratic Party is going to take the signs about angry white voters and focus on their issues to the point where they neglect the progress that was made on minority rights during the Obama administration. I’m very worried about those rights not being protected, I’m quite worried about immigration, I’m very worried about foreign policy and the Iran Deal and I’m worried about the rise of alt-right groups in Europe. I have a lot of concerns — women’s rights in particular, and the nomination of a Supreme Court justice.
The thing that’s going to be particularly telling is whether or not the Republicans in the House and Senate can actually stand unified with the Trump administration. I think in the last four to eight years we’ve seen a lot of fracturing within the Republican Party, and I don’t think they’re as united as Paul Ryan is trying to say that they are. Whether or not they’re able to be as destructive as they could be to immigration, women’s rights, the economy, etc. is going to be based on whether or not they can stand united.
Q: What concrete action do you plan to take next?
A: I’m thinking about going back [home] to North Carolina and working in politics or maybe education. I’m increasingly realizing that the fact that demographically a lot of educated college graduates flock to Boston, New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles cannot be doing good things for the Democratic Party as a whole. I doubt the Electoral College is going away anytime soon, so I’m trying to figure out concrete things that I can do.