Aggies Turn Out to Support Presidential Candidates

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Texas A&M students were out in full force Tuesday supporting the candidates they feel could do the best job in the White House.

Some say it's that kind of youthful enthusiasm that is bringing out more donkeys to what traditionally has been an elephant hunting ground.

You could call it the winds of change: a dominantly red campus that's recently been seeing a whole lot of blue.

"Have you voted for Barack Obama today," one Obama supporter asked students outside the Memorial Student Center.

"When I looked for a presidential candidate, I looked for someone that supported students, and he really attracted me with the fact he's trying to help with financial aid," A&M Sophomore Zamara Thibodeau said of Obama.

That's why the sophomore says she wanted to get in on the action and dedicate her time to the campaign.

"I have four tests this week, and I feel like this is going to be a very important four-to-eight years, and I think I should take my time to help," the student said.

However, not all students were feeling the Obama fever that's swept over at least a portion of the college campus.

"Have you voted? No? Run away, it's ok. I'm the scary liberal," an Obama supporter said to students avoiding his flyer/sticker handouts.

"I voted for Ron Paul," A&M Class of 2010 student Marc Smith said.

Another student said, "It's not the fact that I don't like them. It's that I want to cast my vote in favor of what I do like, Huckabee."

Students say the issues most important to them are healthcare, financial aid, the war, and experience. As for those split between two candidates, they're going with the one who has the better odds.

"The reason I'm not voting for Huckabee is because he's so far behind in the race and he probably won't have any chance of getting president, so I really want to have a say in who becomes President, which is why I am leaning towards Obama now," A&M freshman Barbuceamu said.

The power of the young vote is expected to be crucial in this primary election and in November. Since Sunday, Fox News has broadcasted live election coverage from the Memorial Student Center.

Veteran newsman Shepard Smith says he is impressed by the number of young people wanting to make a difference.

"It's a fired up campus. I'm very impressed with Aggieland," Smith said. "I've always heard it was a special place. My dad went here. It was a very involved campus, it was well-mannered, good students, and it's all true."