Tim Kaine Stops At Davidson

Tim Kaine Stops At Davidson

The vice presedential nominee paid the College a visit this past week.
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On Wednesday, October 12th around 3:00 pm I headed to the front of Chambers, awkwardly navigating the caution tape and thin, white ropes requesting that people not step on the grass. I finally made it into what looked like a line, hovering, unsure how to proceed.

Luckily, I was approached by an older woman, a volunteer tag draped around her neck, who explained to get into the rally I would need to fill out a volunteer form, which would serve as my ticket. I checked a few boxes, despite knowing that I definitely do not have time to phone bank or go door to door asking for votes.

When they finally let people into the area in front of the stage, I rushed to the front. And then the waiting began. I hadn’t really thought about how the line started at 3 but Kaine’s speech wasn’t due until 5, but it suddenly hit me while standing in the bright sun in a long-sleeve shirt. Once my friends got there, I finally conceded and just sat on the ground. I wasn’t the only one, there were people nearby me watching Netflix on the ground.

Around 4:30 is when things actually got started. After the National Anthem led by the Nuances and the pledge of allegiance led by Dana Ferguson, a Davidson alum and member of the electoral college came out and spoke. He was followed by a member of congress, then Dan Blue III who was running for North Carolina Treasurer, and finally, Alma Adams, another member of congress, who at one point, speaking of Donald Trump, said “Bless his heart”. They each spoke about their own feelings on government, particularly in the state of North Carolina, and how they feel Hilary Clinton is a better choice over her opponent.

Then the clock struck 5:00, but nothing happened. We waited. And waited. And waited. Then finally, nearly half an hour late, Kaine came out. He greeted everyone with a wave, and then asked us if we’d seen the recent presidential debate. He spent the greater part of his speech unpacking the debate and the differences in policy, focusing on economic plans, college and important issues. He spoke eloquently, seeming a much different person than during the Vice-Presidential Debate. He pointed out how independent analysts have said Clinton’s plan will be better for the economy than Trump’s. He explained that Clinton intends to make college debt-free and free for families who make under $125,000 a year. He then attacked Trump for his recent comments about women, and asserted the need for reforms to ensure equality, especially for people of color and members of the LGBTQ+ community.

Kaine ended his speech by encouraging attendees to vote and then he stepped off the stage. I expected him to retreat inside, but instead, he walked up to the crowd and began shaking hands and signing autographs. I managed to shove my hand out between two people, and actually got two handshakes on accident. Kaine smiled at me and thanked me for coming.

While Kaine spoke about information that could have been easily found online (as Clinton and Trump’s policies and opinions are fairly well-known), and the rally involved a lot of cheering and booing at appropriate moments, I still felt it was a beneficial experience. Reading information online is one thing, but hearing it specifically from the candidate running and getting a sense of the community’s feelings on each topic felt somehow more informative and valuable. If you get a chance to attend one, I highly recommend it, if just to understand what goes on.

Cover Image Credit: Emi Moore

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The Trump Presidency Is Over

Say hello to President Mike Pence.

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Remember this date: August 21, 2018.

This was the day that two of President Donald Trump's most-important associates were convicted on eight counts each, and one directly implicated the president himself.

Paul Manafort was Trump's campaign chairman for a few months in 2016, but the charges brought against him don't necessarily implicate Trump. However, they are incredibly important considering was is one of the most influential people in the Trump campaign and picked Mike Pence to be the vice presidential candidate.

Manafort was convicted on five counts of tax fraud, two counts of bank fraud, and one count of failure to file a report of a foreign bank account. And it could have been even worse. The jury was only unanimous on eight counts while 10 counts were declared a mistrial.

Michael Cohen, Trump's personal lawyer, told a judge that Trump explicitly instructed him to break campaign-finance laws by paying two women not to publicly disclose the affairs they had with Trump. Those two women are believed to be Karen McDougal, a Playboy model, and Stormy Daniels, a pornstar. Trump had an affair with both while married to his current wife, Melania.

And then to no surprise, Fox News pundits spun this in the only way they know how. Sara Carter on Hannity said that the FBI and the Department of Justice are colluding as if it's some sort of deep-state conspiracy. Does someone want to tell her that the FBI is literally a part of the DOJ?

The Republican Party has for too long let Trump get away with criminal behavior, and it's long past time to, at the very least, remove Mr. Trump from office.

And then Trump should face the consequences for the crimes he has committed. Yes, Democrats have a role, too. But Republicans have control of both chambers of Congress, so they head every committee. They have the power to subpoena Trump's tax returns, which they have not. They have the power to subpoena key witnesses in their Russia investigations, which they have not.

For the better part of a year I have been asking myself what is the breaking point with Republicans and Trump. It does not seem like there is one, so for the time being we're stuck with a president who paid off two women he had an affair with in an attempt to influence a United States election.

Imagine for a second that any past president had done even a fraction of what Trump has.

Barack Obama got eviscerated for wearing a tan suit. If he had affairs with multiple women, then Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell would be preparing to burn him at the stake. If they won't, then Trump's enthusiastic would be more than happy to do so.

For too long we've been saying that Trump is heading down a road similar to Nixon, but it's evident now that we're way past that point. Donald Trump now has incriminating evidence against him to prove he's a criminal, and Special Counsel Robert Mueller is just getting started.

Will Trump soften the blow and resign in disgrace before impeachment like Nixon did? Knowing his fragile ego, there's honestly no telling what he'll do. But it's high time Trump leaves an office he never should have entered in the first place.

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I'm Proud To Be A Liberal, Even Though It's Hard In A Small, Southern Community

"So, what do you think about *insert controversial topic here*?"

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Growing up in rural North Carolina, having a different political stance was hard, to say the least. I grew up in a conservative home with my parents and my sister. Whenever I entered high school, I began to explore politics and developed my own views, rather than rely on my parents.

Being a liberal in high school, I was often bombarded with questions from my peers and members of my community. Every time something would happen in the world that was controversial, I would always get asked, "what do you think about it?" The truth is, it made me super anxious since I didn't like discussing my political views because it made me feel so out of place.

When the 2016 Presidential Election came around, I had a teacher that surveyed us on our political views. I didn't answer the questions truthfully because I didn't want her to judge me. When the election results came out, my small rural high school was full of "Make America Great Again" propaganda. We had a class discussion the next day but I kept quiet since I didn't want to discuss my feelings because honestly, it was no one's business. I couldn't vote at the time, but I still had my own opinions.

I attended the Red4Ed rallies and I was told, it wasn't doing anything but causing a disruption. But, we made a DIFFERENCE!

People were always SO SURPRISED to find out that I am a liberal. They would instantly assume I was the worst, the stereotypical Democrat. During class discussions that were politically motivated, it was usually me against the rest of the class. But you know, I learned to deal with it.

I learned how to avoid political topics, I learned how to bite my tongue, I learned how to respectfully disagree, and MOST IMPORTANTLY, I learned to be open-minded.

If you have something that you want to talk about as adults, sure, I am open to listening, but listen to my side too. I have conservative friends and family. I have learned to not indulge in the latest political topics with them. We have respectfully agreed, to disagree.

I am proud to be a liberal, even in a small, southern community.

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