The Westfield Voice

The Student News Site of Westfield State University

The Westfield Voice

The Westfield Voice

Westfield State Student Voters Express Opinions on the Supreme Court Vacancy and the Election


Student voters at Westfield State University are divided regarding the impact of the Supreme Court vacancy with less than one week until the 2020 presidential election. 

As November 3rd approaches, student voters at the university, like many Americans, are weighing their options for Presidential candidates. In recent weeks, the Supreme Court vacancy created by the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg soon resulted in “a battle” between the Democratic and Republican parties, according to a New York Times article.

Due to the current political divide, 2020 presidential candidates Donald Trump and Joe Biden were asked about the Supreme Court vacancy in the first presidential debate. 

While President Trump believes he should move forward with his choice for the Supreme Court because he has been President for at least four years, former Vice President Biden says it should be the choice of whoever the American people elect on November 3rd, as noted during the first debate on September 29th, 2020.

“Because Supreme Court Justices serve for life, the ramifications of their appointment will last for years. I think that the vacancy is an extremely powerful component of the election and voters should consider it deeply,” said junior English major, Rachel Finney. 

Some student voters at Westfield State University are divided on the extent to which the Supreme Court vacancy should influence people’s votes. Two students in Professor Marsha Marotta’s American National Government course, offered through the university’s Political Science Department, provided their opposing opinions. 

“I think the Supreme Court vacancy won’t influence voters much in the election, considering Amy Barrett will make her way through the Senate and there won’t be a vacancy left,” said Aaron Lessing. 

“To disregard this vacancy and see it as something not important enough to sway your political opinion is ignorant. Of course, the justices on the bench are supposed to be impartial, but we all know that their political affiliation has a substantial amount of impact on their decision making,” said Lyric Lamagdelaine, adding, “Of course, the vacancy won’t be the main influence of my vote, but it will have a lot to do with it.”

Democrats in Congress expressed frustration about inconsistencies between handlings of the current vacancy compared to the vacancy left during the 2016 Presidential Election, as reported by CNN a few weeks ago. According to a report by Congressional Digest during the 2016 Presidential Election, prominent Republicans in the Senate argued that an appointment to the Supreme Court could not be made during an election year. 

As of Tuesday evening, Judge Amy Coney Barrett has been confirmed by the Senate and will become the next Associate Supreme Court Justice.

Meanwhile, Westfield State University hosted two events in October regarding the 2020 Presidential Election, according to an email from Dean Emily Todd of the College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences.

According to a press release from September, 2020, Westfield State is considered one of the best valued public universities in the nation. Their website’s academic information lists a variety of majors, minors, and concentrations, resulting in a well-rounded student body of 6,000+ students.

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