Let me start off by saying that whoever gets on the Democratic ticket in November will have my vote. What can I say – I am a staunch Democrat. I believe both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton would equally make a terrific president.Needless to say, whenever the topic of politics comes up and people ask who I support, people stare when I say I support Hillary Clinton.
After the stares, people usually ask why. I suppose people stare and ask why because they are shocked. I am a college student, so that must mean I automatically support Obama. And trust me, I feel the pressure of being a minority here on campus.
But I am not resentful of that at all. Hey, if Obama wins the Democratic ticket, I am voting for him.
What it all comes down to is this: when it comes to who I feel would make a terrific president, I believe both would fulfill that position. But Hillary, I feel, would fill it better.
One of my biggest concerns this election is the war. However, both Obama and Clinton support a phased redeployment of U.S. troops out of Iraq, meaning that we would slowly wean them off our support and teach them to rely on themselves.
As an English education major, another one of my biggest concerns is what the presidential candidates are going to do about the No Child Left Behind Act. I do not want to be teaching students how to write formulaic five paragraph essays or how to speed-read in order to make the time limit.
Obama only wants to reform the No Child Left Behind Act. Clinton wants to end it. Discovering whether children are excelling in schools cannot be portrayed by a test. Furthermore, students are only being tested in reading, writing and math. What about the students who are gifted in the arts or sciences?
Also, what about the students with learning disabilities or special education students? The tests definitely do not demonstrate a child’s performance in these cases.
No Child Left Behind is a failure. We do not need to reform it, we need to end it.
Another hot topic in these elections are LGBTQ issues. Clinton has supported civil unions for quite a while. She was the first First Lady to march in a gay pride parade. She has fought against Federal Marriage Amendments numerous times, and while she was Senator of New York, she supported the expansion and the efforts of the Lesbian and Gay Community Services Center by securing $500,000 for them.
I looked on Obama’s website for his stance on LGBTQ issues, and while it was hard to find, he supports civil unions. However, LGBTQ rights are not as prevalent in Obama’s campaign as they are in Clinton’s.
Women’s health and abortion are another set of issues in the elections that the candidates are faced with. Hillary Clinton has supported Roe v. Wade for years, fought against Congress’ ideas of limiting Roe v. Wade and was one of the prime fighters for making Plan B an over-the-counter medication.
However, once again, when I visited Obama’s website, I found nothing on his issues for women’s health, except for one paragraph about what he has done in the past at the very bottom of the page about his health care plan. There is nothing on his stance on birth control.
This leads us to the next huge issue: healthcare. Clinton has been fighting for universal healthcare since she has been in the political eye. As First Lady, she fought against the drug companies with her Vaccines for Children Program to make sure every child got immunizations and vaccinations and helped design the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, which provided health insurance for children.
As Senator of New York, she worked to lower the costs of prescription drugs and protect us from bioterrorism. She has also challenged Congress in fighting the war against HIV/AIDS.
Both Clinton and Obama have detailed plans on how to provide healthcare for America, but I have found little on Obama’s website on what he has done in the past to fight for healthcare.
So when it comes down to who can talk the talk and walk the walk regarding healthcare, Clinton clearly wins.
Fighting global warming and the economy are two more issues in this election that are receiving recognition. Clinton plans on killing two birds with one stone by creating what she calls “Green Collar” jobs. By having people make our nation’s buildings more “green”, she is not only creating jobs and boosting the economy, but also fighting global warming as well.
So when people ask me why I support Hillary Clinton, this is why. Because she is not just talking, she is showing me proof of what she has done before. Barack Obama may have terrific ideas, but he has not shown me what he has done to improve America.
Actions speak louder than words. I want action, not words. Talking will not get America anywhere. If Clinton is president, there will be action.
Jenn Halligan is a first-year student majoring in secondary English education with a minor in Spanish. She can be reached at JH653435@wcupa.edu.