Midterm Elections Are Upon Us

Local signs or posters hung up around town.

Sarah O

Local signs or posters hung up around town.

Sarah Ocampo

Midterm Election: Importance, Awareness


The Midterm elections are coming up. On November 8. 2022 the way families and our voting peers vote will dictate the way our country will run for years to come. After a global pandemic, the overturn of Roe v Wade, and the rise in awareness for racial injustice the United States will have to try to rise to its issues and solve them. But the US democracy cannot do this without citizen help.


The United States legislative branch consists of two parts-the Senatorial and Representative chambers. In the US, the number of Senators of each State is determined by the state population. All 469 seats in the House of Representative are all reran every two years, and every six years, 36 of the 100 Senatorial seats are campaigned.


The majority of members in a house, means majority controls the house vote. The political party that has the majority in Congress, has the ability to legislate what the president is able to do.  That dictates what can pass through the executive branch. Each of the  representatives have the power to change the US government with just a simple vote. Voting outside of Congress works similarly, voters have the ability to control what political party has the majority.  For students that are not old enough to vote, the best way to impact the midterm elections is to vocally express their opinions, and spreading awareness for the best fit congress member. 


20 year old Ava Starks is currently a third year student at Penn State University. She is also president of the Penn State Student Black Caucus. “Penn State Student Black Caucus is an umbrella organization for all of the other black works on the Penn State University Park campus. We basically strive to provide a support network for black students, black organizations and just overarching students of color population on Penn State, or at Penn State.” The Black Caucus’ political action committee is currently working with other works on campus for voter registrations and spreading information in or out of town.


Stark emphasizes the importance of voting has on congress, especially in swing states, like Pennsylvania.  


“Even though you might think that your one vote isn’t going to do anything, there’s been research and statistics that show that even a few votes have the ability to turn an election around,” says Stark. “Just using your voice and standing up for what you believe in and who you think would be the best representative for your values and ideals.”


In contrast to Cristina Ibarra, a social worker in California, who mentions how in her area with a diverse population, decisions made by an individual would most likely align with the majority of other voters. “It’s not that my vote doesn’t matter, but I actually agree with the majority…I know that they are actually important in reflecting how particle candidates are doing and influencing each proposition.” Pennsylvanian minorities are not afforded the same luxury.


It’s important to hear student voices as well; Even if students cannot vote, they still have a role to contribute to an influential town or nation. That will hopefully lead to a better American future for all of their citizens. 


There are local resources that students can easily access. For instance, before Starks could vote, she volunteered at the Centre County Democratic campaign which is open for highschool students as well.

Stark and her committee, alongside others local organizations, are currently working to influence the change that will go down in political history. The upcoming 2022 election currently holds the most weight in topics that will influence modern day politics, including climate change, abortion rights, healthcare, and gun policy. Pennsylvania is on the brink of voting bias. Pennsylvanians are leaning towards the left ever since  Roe v Wade was overturned and increased interest on abortions legality in the state. Locally, the state’s 218 seats is what it takes to gain control of the house. 218 seats would dictate what goes on in this country. 

Everyone is currently in a major political shift, but that does not mean that young Americans have to be afraid of the lack of voice and control they have over politics. They can do so by volunteering and spreading political awareness with their friends, peers, and guardians. Regardless of being able to vote or not.