Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Republicans Go After College Student Voters in Queens to Save Padavan

Chris Puntarelli from the St. John's University Democrats reports:
"Here in SD-11 the Republican party has it out for the students of St. John’s University. After challenging the votes of some voters in the district (as is usual for elections) the Republican party is challenging the votes of students here.

Senator Frank (the tank) Padavan has subpoenaed a handful of students at St. John’s.

The New York Times reports:

“Republican lawyers have challenged the votes of students, mostly from St. John’s University, saying that they filled out affidavit ballots with addresses that were not their permanent residences. In the paper ballot count, Mr. Padavan is leading by about 600 votes, but about 1,000 more ballots remained to be counted and the validity of an additional 2,000 must still be reviewed.

While the challenges and subpoenas have angered students, who are being forced to appear during exams, they underscore the high stakes attached to winning the Senate seat in Queens.”

The Republican party has gone out of its way to hassle students who were excited to vote in an election for the first time in decades.

Yesterday, I spoke with a classmate of mine who was recently featured in the Times article who was incensed that the Republican party has challenged her vote in court not only forcing her to prove she voted legally, but the fact that it’s during the final exams.

I’m glad this race is finally getting the attention from bigger media outlets it deserves. From what I know, students are upset but will show in court. I ask you, don’t let this discourage you from voting in the future. Do not let anyone take away your right to vote. I leave you with a quote from Lyndon B. Johnson.

“The vote is the most powerful instrument ever devised by man for breaking down injustice and destroying the terrible walls which imprison men because they are different from other men.”

Lets break down this wall of injustice."

UPDATE: According to Daily Politics, "Supreme Court Justice Kevin Kerrigan stated that the subpoenas issued to several St. John's college students by the Republicans were little more than a nuisance and should be dismissed.

The judge told the students to return to their studies, but due to the fact that the subpoenas had listed the wrong time for the hearing, they had already burned several hours hanging around the courthouse and weren't happy about it."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If the NY Times story is correct and one of the students could only be subpoenaed at her home in Massachusetts, the question to ask is why she could not be subpoenaed at her Jamaica address given on her affidavit.

Also, the students are not having any exams this week. This week is Carnival Week at St. John's. Exams begin next week. One can see the exam schedules at