Hogg pushes early voting

State+Senator+Rob+Hogg+talks+to+a+student+at+the+Pentecrest%2C+Tuesday%2C+May+3%2C+2016.+Early+voting+in+Iowa+goes+till+June+6.+%28The+Daily+Iowan%2FTing+Xuan+Tan%29

Ting Xuan Tan

State Senator Rob Hogg talks to a student at the Pentecrest, Tuesday, May 3, 2016. Early voting in Iowa goes till June 6. (The Daily Iowan/Ting Xuan Tan)

By Maria Curi

[email protected]

The main goal of Sen. Rob Hogg, D-Cedar Rapids, on Tuesday was simple: Get out the vote.

Hogg, who is vying for the Democratic spot to go up against Sen. Chuck Grassley for the U.S Senate, was on the Pentacrest Tuesday morning encouraging students to vote early for the 2016 Democratic primary before leaving for the summer.

Early voting started for races for less competitive local ballots such as Johnson County Board of Supervisors, in addition to the congressional and Legislature races.

The ability to vote early is a key instrument in Hogg’s goal to “uplift” democracy, because it increases flexibility to voters, he said. The 49-year-old said he would like students to vote before they leave for summer. The primary election is on June 7.

Hogg also said it decreases the administrative inconvenience natural to Election Day and encourages people to vote.

The last primary in Johnson County was held in June 2014 and 3,376 ballots were cast, according to the Johnson County Auditor’s Office.

The most important issue Hogg hopes to address if elected to the U.S Senate is environmental sustainability, which he said is what personally motivated him to run.

Hogg also wants to work on creating an economy that works for all Americans and reaches full employment.

“To me, it’s a matter of social justice that every young American be in school, training, or have a job opportunity,” Hogg said.

Additionally, Hogg wants to enact campaign reform not just in how they are being financed but also in the culture of modern campaigning. He believes negative attack adds and sound bites are “not just irritating to the people involved, but it’s doing long term damage to our democracy.”

As a father of three young adults, Hogg said, he understands young Americans do want to make a difference in their communities but are turned off by the “garbage” from our political system over the last 12 years.

“If we can get this young generation of Americans involved, there is nothing we can’t accomplish,” Hogg said.

UI senior Trent Seubert said he believes his generation doesn’t get involved because they don’t believe in the system. He also thinks it’s because people are unaware of the impact smaller ticket races have on everyday life.

“This election, though not as sexy the presidential one, is still impactful to the community,” Seubert said. “Mental health, housing, and transportation all come into play in today’s election.”

Kristin Wildensee, a volunteer for supervisor candidates Kurt Friese and Jason Lewis, understands voting in this election signifies real change to the issues that affect her most.

One of these is urban sprawl. Wildensee, who attended the Hogg event, said she wants to ensure fairness and mass transit is obtained before urban sprawl continues.

Friese’s campaign slogan, “stop pouring concrete on good farmland,” spoke directly to Wildensee’s immediate concern of “ending up with nothing but cars.”

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