After months of attack ads, bickering and endless polling, President Obama has secured another four years in the White House, and Loyola students have mixed reactions to the news.
On Tuesday, Nov. 6, Barack Obama reached the 270 electoral votes needed to defeat Republican challenger Mitt Romney in the presidential race. Students gathered in the lobby of CFSU and the Crown Center auditorium Tuesday night to watch the results.
“I’ve been really anxious and excited, just a huge mix of emotions,” said Samantha Juarez, a sophomore political science major who sat with friends in CFSU as Obama’s victory was announced. “It’s just really great to be with friends where we can be anxious together.”
Juarez, 19, said she voted for Obama because he was more aligned with her political views than Romney.
“As a woman, as a Hispanic minority and as a member of the LGBTQ community, there was a lot at stake,” Juarez said.
More than half of Loyola students favored Barack Obama in the election, according to an unscientific Phoenix poll of 119 students conducted Sept. 7-9, which showed 59 percent planning to vote for Obama. Only 10 percent of those polled said they were planning to vote for Romney, and the rest were unsure who they were voting or planned not to vote.
Peter D’Aunno, 19, president of the Loyola College Democrats, said he was pleased with the election results but does not see Obama’s victory as a complete victory.
“I am happy that President Obama won. Obviously, I think it’s another step in the right direction, but I have kind of a subdued happiness because a lot of work needs to be done,” said D’Aunno, a psychology major. “The country is very divided and there’s a lot of work to be done before we can move forward and improve the lives of every American.”
College Republicans Vice President Dominic Lynch, 19, said he was surprised by the election results.
“It caught me off guard, to be honest. I was not expecting that at all,” said Lynch, a sophomore political science major. “I did some electoral college predictions and I had all of them [the predictions] with Romney winning.”
Erin Baumann, a junior political science major, organized an election night viewing party in the Crown Center auditorium. She is the president of Inside Government, a non-partisan student organization which introduces students to government at the local, state and federal levels.
Baumann said she was impressed with the turnout. About 100 people had passed through, and about 25 people had stayed since the event began at 5 p.m., she said.
Baumann said the excitement students showed in the auditorium was in sharp contrast to what she had seen on campus leading up to the election.
“Our campus has been relatively quiet. We haven’t been that outspoken,” Baumann said. “But the quietness of campus [before election night] to today is impressive to see. I think election night brings that out in a lot of people.”
by Tyler Langan