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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Monday, June 24, 2024

Obama comfortably earns majorities in both Medford and Somerville

Exit polling in Somerville and Medford indicated a resounding mandate for Barack Obama yesterday, as most citizens fell in line behind the Democratic nominee.

With 100 percent of precincts reporting, 66 percent of Medford residents supported Obama. Eighty-one percent of Somerville residents voted for Obama, with 71 percent of precincts reporting at

press time.

Their voting preferences were in line with the greater Massachusetts vote in which 62 percent of residents voted for Obama with 83 percent of precincts reporting at press time.

Foreign policy played an integral role in shaping the preferences of many voters, who believe the Bush administration's actions have alienated America from the international community.

"We'd like to see an improvement in our image in the world," said Emily Culliton, a Medford resident who voted Democrat "straight down the board." She and her husband Zac said foreign policy and healthcare were of paramount importance in shaping their views on the presidential candidate.

Over 63 percent of Middlesex County, of which Medford and Somerville are a part, voted for Obama with 77 percent of precincts reporting at press time.

Nicole Jalbert, 22, is a registered Republican but said she switched allegiances for this election because America needs to change course.

"I just think in general the Republican way isn't working so we need to get the Democrats in here and see if they can fix the mess we're in," Jalbert said.

Kemi Akinyele, a 22-year-old registered Democrat, said she voted for Obama because "he presents himself in a very intellectual manner, and he seems to care a lot for the people he wants to represent."

In reference to a McCain policy that would give $5,000-per-family tax credits toward healthcare insurance, Akinyele added "anyone who believes $5,000 will take care of your healthcare is completely delusional."

The daughter of Nigerian parents, Akinyele said Obama is a unifying figure who can help heal a large "divide in how [African Americans] represent ourselves."

"It makes me feel extremely proud that not only do we have an African-American candidate, but a well-qualified African-American candidate," she said.

Valerie, a registered Independent who requested her last name be withheld, said Obama's more egalitarian economic policies appealed to her.

"I believe that the wealth should be shared," she said. "That makes me a bit of a socialist, but community is as aspect of socialism. Healthcare needs to be government funded and universal."

Sophomore Adam Arazi said that he voted for the Obama-Biden ticket because he believes that Biden, who Arazi supported in the primaries, "needs to be in office some way or another."

"I do not like Barack Obama, but I like Sarah Palin less than Barack," Arazi said, citing Obama's inexperience.

A 59-year-old registered Democrat who asked to be referenced as Jim, said he decided to vote for Libertarian candidate Ron Paul because neither of the major party choices seemed worthy.

"I wasn't happy with either candidate," Jim said. "I think that too [often] there is too much government; I think the corporations control this country. I don't think Obama's got enough experience and I'm not happy with the failed Republican policies of the last eight years."

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