Midterm election nears

Associated Students (AS) recently held a campaign titled Rock the Matador Vote to encourage students, if they haven’t already, to register to vote in the general elections on Nov 4.

The campaign served as a reminder that voting is essential.

“It exercises the right for us, as human beings in a free country, to express our opinion,” said Charmaine McCladdie, a CSUN senior business management major.

California’s ballot this year contains six propositions, three of which may affect college students.

“We do not have total power over what the government does,” said transfer student Sarah Kassaye, cinema and television arts major. “But voting allows the people to slightly influence the decision-making process.”

Proposition 1 would allow over $7.5 billion in general obligation bonds to help fund water-related projects. If passed, another $425 million from unsold general obligation bonds approved for schools, healthcare, and public safety, would go toward the same water projects.

It is stated in the Official Voter Information Guide that although the water projects could benefit the state’s environment, it “does little to relieve the drought.”

Proposition 2 requires half of the California general fund revenues to pay for existing state debts annually. There would be a limit on the remaining funds, and taxpayers and school districts would be affected.

The guide suggests that voting yes could potentially speed up state debt payments.

Proposition 47 reduces misdemeanor sentencing of criminal offenders for certain drug and property offenses. The previously stated offenses are currently classified as felony charges. Voting yes on this proposition would grant offenders little to no jail time for using date rape drugs in the course of an assault, stealing a handgun, and identity theft.

If Proposition 47 passes, Free Speech Radio says, it could save the state hundreds of millions of dollars annually by reducing the prison population and redirecting funds for drug treatment and education. As a result, one-in-five inmates in the state’s prison system may be granted early releases.

“It’s important to learn the pros and cons of each proposition because of the significant ramifications that may result if they pass or fail,” said Tiruhi Avakyan, a CSUN senior psychology major.