In the 2008 election, President Obama received 68% of the college student vote. In North Carolina, the president won that state by 1% of the vote, and the student vote was the determining factor in winning the state. The Republicans are well aware that the college student vote could help decide which candidate wins the election, so they are also trying to suppress their influence and significance.

The young voters’ ages 18-29 made up 1/5 of the electorate in 2008, and President Obama must demonstrate in this election that he is working to improve their condition. Young people and college graduates have been hit extremely hard by the recession, and the downturn of the economy, and many are unemployed or underemployed.

The Republicans will use in the election of 2012; new voting laws to make it difficult for college students to vote. These new laws will impact ½ of all the states in the country, because the governors and the legislatures are Republican. These red states will use ID requirements as a major impediment and barrier to keep the college students from voting.

Also, on the college campuses there is a large degree of disillusion with the political system, because many students expected greater achievements, and aggressive plans from the president. They expected major change overnight with the system, and all they see is gridlock and fighting. Everybody is pointing their finger at the other one and no one know who to believe.

Finally after almost three years of fighting, the Republicans and the Democrats will compromise on keeping college loans interest rates low and affordable. In 2007, Congress passed the College Cost Reduction and lowered the interest rate on federal student loans from 6.8% to 3.4%. This bill is temporary and it expires in July 2012, and both candidates agree that college loans should be kept at the low rate.

 Some think that Romney is playing politics, because it appears that Romney and many Republicans want Pell grants cut on the federal level. Many say Romney is flip flopping on college loans and he wants to lower interest rates on some college loans and cut others. “With the number of college graduates who can’t find work or who can only find work well beneath their skill level, I fully support the effort to extend the low interest rate on student loans,” said Romney at a campaign event.  

Even though President Obama and Romney agree on keeping college loans interest rates low, the question is, “who do you trust?” Last week President Obama visited three colleges and spoke to the students at the University of North Carolina, the University of Colorado, and the University of Iowa. It is obvious that this was part of his strategy to win the student vote, because the Democrats need the college vote.

Obama told the students at the University of North Carolina that he presently understood the burden of college costs, noting that he and first lady Michelle Obama had been in their shoes, and didn’t pay off their student loans until eight years ago. There is always an authenticity when President Obama gives a speech, because he can connect and has lived that experience.

“I didn’t just read about this. I didn’t get some talking points about this. I didn’t get a policy briefing on this. When we married, we got poor together,” said the president. The secret to our president’s achievements is his education. He is determined to support and fight for affordable education.

It is imperative that college students campaign, register new voters, and vote for President Obama in the 2012 election. College students will be a block of voters that the president will need to win.     

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