‘I hope American voices get heard’: Students react to 2022 midterm election results


Daily file photo by Meghan White

A polling location in Evanston. Several Northwestern students voted in tight races around the country.

Joanna Hou, Assistant Design Editor

As the 2022 midterm election results started pouring in, Northwestern students followed races around the country. Though these students spent Election Day in Evanston, many were invested in hometown outcomes. 

SESP sophomore Mia Xia, who grew up in Texas, said she was most interested in the state’s gubernatorial race. Xia said she voted for Beto O’Rourke (D) and convinced family and friends to follow her lead. 

“I think (Gov. Greg) Abbott and Republicans in Texas don’t represent marginalized people or my personal values,” Xia said. “It’s really important for me to see the people who need the most aid get represented in Texas government.” 

Though O’Rourke lost the position to Abbott, Xia said his efforts to rally people to the polls will slowly help shift the state. However, she did express worries about how Republicans will continue to determine the state’s political direction in the next few years. 

For Weinberg junior and Chicago resident Jane Clarke, the Illinois gubernatorial race sparked some concerns. Clarke worried Darren Bailey (R), who incumbent J.B. Pritzker (D) funded during the primaries, would be too “crazy” as governor. 

After Pritzker’s victory, she said she felt glad he would continue to lead Illinois. Clarke said he has done a good job as governor so far, but hopes he will continue to address a host of issues, including the recent overturning of Roe v. Wade. 

“We’re in the Midwest among a lot of states that are banning abortion,” Clarke said. “(We should) make sure that we’re protecting people who are coming from states like Wisconsin, Iowa and places where it’s going to be really hard to get an abortion after the Dobbs decision.” 

Clarke also followed several local elections after working with a Democratic campaign in Evanston this summer. 

Weinberg senior David Grow followed the senate race in Ohio, backing J.D. Vance (R). Grow said Vance aligns with his personal views on issues like abortion and gun control. 

Vance’s victory shows that Ohio is shifting from a battleground state to a more conservative stronghold, Grow said. He added he’s “excited and happy” to see where the state is headed in the future. 

“I hope he just doesn’t forget where he came from, which is a kind of rural Ohio town where there’s people struggling,” Grow said. “We need someone who’s going to go out there and fight for regular Ohioans, not just what the Democrats want.”

Weinberg sophomore Victor Criollo is following two races closely: a representative race in his old district, New Jersey’s 7th Congressional District, and the Georgia senate race. Neither race has been called at this time, but the New Jersey seat is expected to flip to the Republican candidate. 

Criollo has donated to Sen. Raphael Warnock’s (D) campaign in the past. He said he hopes Democrats don’t suffer massive losses, and that young people will keep showing up to the polls even if the results don’t go in their favor. 

“I hope American voices get heard and the people get to show national and local leaders the issues they really care about and the way they want to see America progress,” Criollo said.

Davis Giangiulio contributed reporting.

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