Last year’s local and presidential elections caused some commotion around East Campus, with voting booths set up in the Heldenfels Administration Building, inviting voters from off campus and on to come and cast their ballots early. However, this election season, which will include a “constitutional amendment election” Nov. 7, hasn’t really caused too much of a stir.
Nueces County Clerk Kara Sands said the aim of this particular election is not to elect government officials into any certain position. Instead, it will allow voters to decide on certain items passed by the Texas House of Representatives, all of which have the potential to become amendments to the Texas Constitution.
“A joint resolution is decided upon by the House members,” Sands said. “And (then) … it can be voted on by the voters.”
There are many important topics that are set to be included on the ballot for this year’s constitutional election. These issues range from professional sports teams conducting charity raffles to tax exemption for the surviving spouses of deceased first responders killed in the line of duty.
“One of the big ones is property taxes for disabled veterans,” Sands added. “This goes for (spouses of disabled veterans) as well.”
Historically, voter turnout for young adults tends to be quite small when compared with other age groups. That’s why Collegiate High School senior and Student Council member Benjamin Falcon stressed the importance of taking an interest in getting involved in politics at a young age.
“As a young person, it’s vital for us to be active in politics,” Falcon said. “I helped out before with (last year’s) student elections, and it felt really gratifying to help them vote, regardless of how they did.”
Sands agrees that participating in the voting process, regardless of whether or not the people casting ballots are deciding on the next president or governor, is crucial for both the community and the voters.
“I think that if folks can get past that (notion that this election is insignificant),” Sands said, “they’ll see that (in reality) all elections are important.”
Early voting for the constitutional amendment election runs through Nov. 3.