Joshua Ellis voted for Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) in the primary election, but when Hillary Clinton was elected as the Democratic presidential nominee, Ellis was faced with a decision.
Ellis, a government and African and African diaspora studies sophomore, said in spite of problems with Clinton’s campaign and her past, he decided to cast his ballot for her.
“As much as I wanted to write in Sen. Sanders, I see it as much more important to keep the other major candidate out simply because his rhetoric is too damaging,” Ellis said. “I don’t like to think about what America would look like [under a Donald Trump presidency].”
Ellis is a member of the Black Student Alliance, a campus organization committed to empowering students in the black community, and said although he can’t speak on behalf of BSA, he is opposed to some of Clinton’s past rhetoric.
“As a black man, I’m seeing issues in the past with Clinton using terms like ‘super-predator’ and especially her husband’s hand in the crime bill that really jump-started mass incarceration,” Ellis said. “I’m not saying she’s directly responsible for them, [but] she supported them at the time. No matter the amount of apologies she could give, it still affects a lot of my family, a lot of the people I know.”
Ellis said achieving equal rights and fixing the problems in the justice system are the biggest issues he sees in this election. He said Clinton’s presidency would be like “a third term of the Obama Administration” and work to improve healthcare and the economy.
While Ellis said he isn’t sure whether Clinton can rectify the nation’s problems, he’s certain she’s a better candidate than Trump.
“I feel like the only person who can give us any kind of hope at this moment is Secretary Clinton,” Ellis said.