Every morning Mikhail Litvinov, a 21-year-old senior at Bloomsburg University, commutes to school from his house in Drums. Litvinov has been anxiously awaiting this Tuesday morning in November. Sitting behind the wheel of his car on route 80, he turns up his radio to hear every station announce the same news, “it’s finally election day.”
Litvinov had just left his local township building and was now headin for another day of classes and practice. But, he had just officially cast his first vote in America, as a full U.S. citizen.
The past year and a half has been a roller-coaster ride of campaigns, conventions and debates and it is clear that this 2008 presidential election will be one for the record books. For Mikhail Litvinov this election will definitely be remembered forever, because it was his first election as an American citizen.
“I am very excited to vote in America, being able to vote and having your vote count is a great thing and a privilege many countries do not have,” beams Litvinov.
Litvinov grew up in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, a place where people’s votes do not have much significance. He became a full U.S citizen in the winter of 2005 and has kept informed on political issues since.
“This process is really important to me because it shows that I am a citizen and I am able to take part in making decisions in this country,” he said.
As a commuter, Litvinov gets much of his presidential information listening to the National Public Radio and visiting Barack Obama’s office in town. He tried to ignore the television commercials because “they skew the truth.” When asked which candidate he favors in this election, Litvinov said Barack Obama would get his vote.
“I like his plans on how to make the U.S. less reliant on foreign oil, how to clean up the economy, and how to make peace with other countries like China, Iran and Russia,” he said.
For many people like Mikhail Litvinov, this will be their first time participating in a presidential election. He is honored to have this opportunity and expresses how important having a voice can be, “voting is very important to everyone that is eligible. I think that everyone should care who becomes president because it can change a lot of what happens in the next four years,” he said.
- Mikhail Litvinov shows off his democratic pride throughout campus on election day.