The Timberline Paw Print

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The Timberline Paw Print

The Timberline Paw Print

Senior Voices: Election Excitement?

Timberline seniors looks towards 2024 presidential election
Photo by: Rian Kavulich
Students work to prepare for the end of the year and beyond.

When you’re a senior in high school, it often feels as though there are a million things to think about. There are not only the final weeks of school and the buzz of graduation, but there is also a future you must plan for. Oftentimes, various responsibilities fall by the wayside, and we become so caught up in our own stories that we forget about one particularly exciting privilege that comes with being 18: the ability to vote. 

As the upcoming 2024 presidential election quickly approaches, with candidates Joe Biden (D) and Donald Trump (R) essentially facing a rematch of 2020, the election is beginning to come to the forefront of everyone’s minds. For Timberline seniors, it is both a nerve wracking and exciting time. On one hand, there exists the joys that come with being a citizen exercising the right to vote and having their beliefs reflected in government. On the other hand, many fear that the polarizing nature of our current political system is only going to drive differences deeper this November. 

In fact, when a few politically active Timberline seniors from both sides of the aisle were asked how they felt about the upcoming election, around 75% described themselves as more nervous than excited. One senior, choosing to remain anonymous, felt a mixture of both emotions: 

“I am excited to vote. I am looking forward to feeling like my voice could help make a difference,” she said. Yet while she may be eager to head to the polls, she fears that others don’t share the same enthusiasm: “I worry about voting apathy, which is when voters aren’t interested in the election and just don’t submit a vote. I think that everyone should vote and contribute, whether you care about the candidates or not,” she said. 

Unfortunately, the concept of voting apathy is highly present in American politics, especially in the younger demographic. According to a Tufts University estimate, only about 23% of voters aged 18-29 cast a ballot in the 2022 midterm elections, the most recent elections held on the federal level. 

Yet this doesn’t seem to be the case for many Timberline seniors. In fact, quite a few truly believe that voting is not only a means of bringing about important change, but is truly a necessary act. “I believe it is our duty as US citizens to vote, and I don’t want to pass up my chance at having some sort of say in who runs our country,” said senior Mark Jones. Another senior choosing to remain anonymous reiterated this sentiment: “I would like to vote to ensure a better and more equal America and do my part as a citizen,” she said. 

When asked about the issues that are driving them to the polls this upcoming election, seniors gave a wide range of answers. There are fears about growing xenophobia, rising inflation, and a lack of access to abortion. Yet the vast majority of seniors, no matter which party or political ideology they identify with, recognized one collective concern: the polarization of American politics. For while it’s clear that many want to become politically involved, no one wants politics to deeply divide the country. “As a country we take politics very seriously, to the point where it can break families and deep relationships apart. People’s ideologies mean far too much to them, and I wish we could all just get along regardless of political affiliation and ideology,” said one anonymous senior. 

So while it’s clear that the upcoming election is both stressful and exhilarating, we’re sure to see Timberline seniors at the polls. Not only are these students opinionated and passionate, but they also want to see their country united. Although no one knows what the outcome of the 2024 election will be, we’re certain that Timberline seniors will make their voices heard. Ultimately, we wish the Wolfpack the best of luck at both the polls and in all the new challenges ahead.

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About the Contributors
Annabel Lawrence
Annabel Lawrence, Editor in-Chief
Hi! I'm Annabel Lawrence, a staff reporter for the Timberline Paw Print. This is my third year at the Paw Print, and I have had an absolute blast these past few years as I discovered a love for journalism. I’m the Editor in-Chief this year, and I absolutely love being on this staff. Through the years I’ve worked on sports pieces, international news, and many other articles, but my favorite kind of news is the stories that unfold around our school and local community. I’m a senior this year, and I’m really looking forward to going to college somewhere on the East coast and eventually pursuing a career in public policy. In my free time I love to travel, hang out with friends, volunteering at elementary schools in the area – really anything! I’m incredibly excited to continue providing news for the students of Timberline and to truly leave my mark on the Paw Print!  
Rian Kavulich
Rian Kavulich, Design/Tech Lead
Hello, my name is Rian! I am a senior, and this is my first year on the Timberline Paw Print. I am a reporter, and I plan on writing about events taking place in school. I enjoy reading; I am a big crime/thriller fan. I hope to go to college and major in English Literature. This year, I am excited to join a fun and creative team!
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