The crowd erupted with praise for U.S. Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein as they joined a lively group of young democrats and faculty Friday for a rally held on behalf of Boxer.
The rally was hosted by the CSUN Young Democrats in the Grand Salon, where Boxer encouraged students to get out and vote.
As the crowd shouted “Barbara! Barbara!” Boxer found her way to the stage with seats filled mostly by students waving black and gold Boxer signs that displayed one of her many platforms as senator, “Jobs for California.”
“As we look at the students behind me, this country is worth fighting for so they can get the education, the job opportunities and the scholarships,” Boxer said.
Boxer added there were a number of polls that showed her in the lead, but it was not enough.
“We are doing great in the polls, yes,” Boxer said. “It means nothing unless people vote.”
Feinstein, a fellow Democrat, addressed the crowd and received a standing ovation. She said that in a democracy, people are asked to do two things: vote and serve on a jury.
“As Barbara would say, ‘it’s a secret vote,’” Feinstein said. “It is (a) great gift of the American democracy.”
Sen. Alex Padilla of California, who also attended the rally, used a short acronym to get his message across.
He said GOTV is what they refer to as “Get Out The Vote.”
“I’m here today to highlight one of the most important races not just for California, but for the United States,” Padilla said.
Natalie Parmenter, 20, liberal studies major and president-elect of the CSUN Young Democrats, said students should put signs in yards, add bumper stickers and do whatever they could to get people to vote.
“Many of us will be voting for the first time,” Parmenter said. “We are so excited that our first opportunity to vote is to vote for Sen. Boxer.”
Junior Krystal Shepherd, 25, political science major, said she is a Democrat, but was interested in hearing from Boxer to make sure she was making the right decision.
In a press conference before the rally, Boxer spoke to undecided college voters who have concerns about getting jobs after graduation.
“Vote for the candidate that is proven and that is committed to getting the job done,” Boxer said.
The message from the rally not only encouraged college students to vote, but gave examples as to why Boxer was the better choice over her opponent, Republican Carly Fiorina.
Feinstein, who came to champion for Boxer as the current and next U.S. senator representing California, said Boxer was a senator who would stand on her own two feet and say what she thinks.
“I am a woman with a mission today, and that mission is to introduce the next U.S. senator,” Feinstein said.
Feinstein added that as Chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, Boxer was able to put her stamp on bills to make sure they got crafted in a great way. She added they both agreed that California was a special place and did not need offshore drilling, which was what Boxer said Fiorina supports.
Boxer’s stance on turning the economy around is to create thousands of clean energy jobs. She said her opponent Fiorina shipped jobs overseas to China and opposed every job bill.
“Her opponent is clearly out of touch,” Padilla said. “The economy is good for exporting California goods, not exporting California jobs.”
Nareg Babaians, vice president-elect of the CSUN Young Democrats said in terms of job creation, Boxer was a big proponent for jobs not just for the elite, but for the middle class.
Both Feinstein and Boxer said they differ from Fiorina when it came to a woman’s right to choose. They said Fiorina supported overturning Roe vs. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision on abortion.
Mehrin Rahman, field organizer of the independent campaign Pro-Choice Students for Boxer at CSUN, said her campaign had many members attend the rally. She said they had been campaigning at more than 20 different California college campuses, including CSUN, to make people aware of the differences between Boxer and Fiorina.
“We are trying to get out there and tell people about Boxer’s record and Fiorina’s extreme position on the economy, jobs, women’s healthcare and abortion,” Rahman said.
In a call and response, Boxer said, “Are you ready to vote?” The crowd shouted, “Yes,” ending the rally with a ripple of applause.