Reacting to a Biden victory

Students mixed on whether Biden will effect change

Kit Nowicki and Emma Brown

A couple hold signs while celebrating Biden’s victory. As cars passed by they encouraged them to honk in support. (Marissa Lordahl)

After four days of counting ballots, Joe Biden was announced as the 46th President of the United States. Biden won Pennsylvania early Saturday morning, putting his electoral vote total over the required 270 to win the presidency.

Trump promised lawsuits in various states following Biden’s win, but as of now has not presented any confirmed evidence of voter fraud resulting in many of the cases being dismissed without disqualifying any ballots.

For first-time presidential election voters at Seattle Pacific University, the election has been a cause of stress and anticipation.

“Even though everyone said results could take three or four days, it was still incredibly stressful to not know who the president is,” said first-year Jenny Coney. “I’m breathing a sigh of relief now that Biden is the president-elect, but the fact that it was even this close after these last four years is concerning.”

A man walks along the Cheshiahud Lake Union Loop the morning Biden’s victory was announced. (Marissa Lordahl)

First-year Hannah Rogers said she is excited to see Biden win, and she’s glad that the stress of waiting for the results is over.

“We trusted the system and it worked. I’m hopeful that we see justice for black lives, immigrants being held by ICE, the LGBTQ+ community, and women’s rights,” said Rogers. “We have elected someone who holds these issues in high importance, and now we will work towards creating a better and more equal society for all Americans.”

Contrarily, first-year Erik Olsen is unsure of just how effective Biden’s presidency will be at addressing such issues. 

“I don’t know if he’s going to be able to really address the civil rights issues that need to be addressed right now. It just seems kind of a continuation of the Obama and Bush-era policies and stuff and I’m not sure if that’s necessarily a good thing,” said Olsen. 

Even though he’s not fully confident in the Biden administration, Olsen still voted for him because he did not want four more years of Trump as president.

Olsen was not alone in his motivations for voting for Biden, as shown by the popular “settle for Biden,” hashtag on social media.

The Doyle Building in downtown Seattle boards up its entrance, awaiting 2020 election results and reactions. (Gabrialla Cockerell)

The race was divided by only a slim margin before the mail-in votes were counted, which largely favored Biden. The Trump administration has put forward plans to sue for voter fraud, although there is no actual evidence of such fraud.

“I’m just scared that if Trump does take it to the Supreme Court, knowing that it is very heavily favored in his realm, so that’s definitely a little bit scary,” said first-year political science major Rhorrie Henning. 

Similarly, although he is significantly trailing behind current governor Jay Inslee in Washington’s governor race, Republican candidate Loren Culp refuses to concede the race until all votes have been counted and wants voters to check their ballot statuses for any irregularities.

“It’s not surprising because Culp’s election campaign paralleled Trump’s in a lot of ways, but it’s irritating. It’s further normalizing Trump’s behavior,” said Martin. 

The Doyle Building in downtown Seattle boards up its entrance, awaiting 2020 election results and reactions. (Gabrialla Cockerell)

Martin said they both allowed large rallies that didn’t follow social-distancing laws, putting attendees at risk of contracting COVID-19, and were vague about how they intended to uphold their promise to “make things better.”

The Senate races in Alaska and North Carolina have yet to be called, but Georgia is set to schedule a runoff election. The Republican party maintains the lead 48 to 46, but a Senate majority is still attainable for Democrats.

In Delaware, Sarah McBride was elected the first openly-transgender senator in United States history.

“Having the first trans senator gave me hope in these times where it is so up in the air,” said Henning. “We have moved forward even though it feels like we have been taking so many steps in the opposite direction.”

While following the Senate race, Henning was also excited to see senator Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez re-elected for the state of New York.

“She gives young girls someone to look up to and doesn’t take the misogyny. That is something so many people, especially females, are scared to do. AOC and her group are the reason RBG fought for women’s rights,” said Henning.