Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Youth Voters Assess Obama’s First 100 Days
By Brian W. Carter (Staff Writer)
Published April 30, 2009

As the driving force behind President Barack Obama’s election, the 18-to-35-year-old voting bloc gained plenty of focus and attention during the campaign. Voters under 30 went with Obama over John McCain by over a 2:1 margin

Now that the president has passed the 100-day mark, they too have an opinion on how he’s performed.

Despite facing a mountain of obstacles on his desk when he was inaugurated, most felt that he showed strong leadership while making great strides in tackling the country’s problems.

“He’s demonstrated a hands-on approach to situations as they arise and is accountable to the public even when he makes mistakes,” said Anton Blakely, an aid to Assemblyman Mike Davis.

Blakely also praised the president for upholding his promise to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center by 2010.

Konstantine Hatcher, a state delegate for the Democrat Party, touted the benefits of the economic stimulus bill, saying that he’s already seen people use their money to help local programs.

“These are things critical to communities to help turn them around and get the country back on track,” Hatcher said.

Education was a vital concern for most young voters and they give Obama high marks for funding the No Child Left Behind Act as part of the $25 million earmarked for education in the stimulus bill.

Part of that money will go towards making college more affordable by increasing financial aid, a need that most voters stressed with the rising costs of college tuition.

To his credit, the president has repaid the youth support with bold initiatives, such as the SERVE Act that provides more opportunities for college graduates to participate in community service.

Despite their praise, they also had some criticisms. John Bulwer, an Inglewood native who’s a student at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona, said that the president’s call for change in Washington politics appears misleading with several members of his Cabinet coming from former President Bill Clinton’s administration.

Blakely also added that while the tax cuts have benefited those who make less than $200,000, it doesn’t offset the fact that other costs, such as food, are rising.

“It would be beneficial if he would pursue a more aggressive tactic in terms of reinvigorating the economy by coming up with a normalized [tax] status for everyone regardless of income,” Blakely said.

It’s still too soon to fully assess the president’s record but the consensus among those asked is that he is on the right track with his plan. Time will tell if the first 100 days has served as a solid foundation for the rest of his term.

“If he continues on this pace, we’ll continue to be in tremendous shape,” Hatcher said.


Categories: National

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