This year’s presidential election is likely to be the only one students will experience while at Iowa State.
“I like how everybody gets fired up,” said Adam Nelson, freshman in pre-computer science. “There’s a lot of political influence. It’s in our culture. We have our freedom of choice and the freedom to vote.”
Taylor Smith, freshman in pre-business, has a different reason for enjoying election season: “I like having the opportunity to have a new president of our country that could push America forward.”
Most people agree, however, that political advertisements are disliked throughout the election.
“I tend to ignore [ads] because I don’t know what is fact and what is fake or people trying to sway me,” Nelson said. “They piss me off. I go to change a song on Pandora, and Obama’s preaching to me. I know it keeps it in everybody’s mind, but to the nonvoters, it’s just annoying.”
Alex Cosby, freshman in mechanical engineering, thinks that ads have both good and bad sides.
“They give you an opinion, but you don’t really know if you can trust it," Cosby said. "Most of them bash on the other candidate. It does make you want to vote, but you don’t know for whom just by listening to the ads. ... If they are going to advertise stuff, it should be about the debates they had, not just one sentence about the candidates.”
Smith voiced a similar opinion: “Specific ads don’t persuade me as much as a debate would. ... Ads with all of these statistics may not be completely true, so I don’t rely on those.”
There are other things people do not like about the elections.
“I don’t like how you [have to be] either a strong Republican or a strong Democrat,” Smith said. “There’s no moderate person that has a chance of winning.”
And Nelson sees the rise of social media in the elections as also frustrating.
“People who complain on Facebook, who have no idea what they are talking about, are annoying," Nelson said.
Specifically on campus, the political groups that have been setting up in front of the library seem to have the same effect as television ads.
“It’s good to see people out there trying to get people to vote," Cosby said. "But when they are there, it’s usually right before class, and I don’t have the time to listen or talk to them. ... Usually when I’m on campus, I have something important that I’m doing, and I’m not looking to get stopped and have to listen to all of the things they have to say.”
Nelson also said he doesn't have the time to stop but said that if people do, the groups can be helpful. “It’s nice because they actually talk to people instead of like the ads on TV shouting at you.”
Neither Nelson nor Cosby plan on voting tomorrow. Cosby said he needed “a candidate that I was interested in. I should have paid more attention, too.”