MT. PLEASANT — Following one of the most contentious elections in modern American history, many students at Mt. Pleasant Community High School were eager to vote in the 2020 presidential election.
Although many did not expect to wait so long for results, some key states took several days to be close enough for news officials to call. Many students who were able to participate in the civic process for the first time this election were frustrated with the delay.
“The delay in the results made me feel nervous and stressed about the outcome, I stayed up very late on election night and the days following just hoping that some new results would come in,” senior Jacob Fry said.
The wait left much of America impatient for results. A result of the COVID-19 pandemic, with extra rules, regulations, and safety procedures there was a longer wait at the voting booth and for results.
One main reason the results were delayed was because of a massive influx in absentee and mail in ballots. These ballots, considered a safer way to vote in the election, were used in record numbers by many including high school students like Fry.
“I was one of the many who voted absentee,” Fry said. “I was prepared for the results not to be announced on election night, as we are used to, because of the huge amount of people who voted absentee or by mail,” he added.
Many started out with the same idea as Fry, they knew it would be delayed because of the large number of absentee ballots and because states like Pennsylvania couldn’t start counting those until Election Day. Many didn’t expect to have to wait until the next week for the race to be called for a candidate.
“I definitely didn’t think it would be four days for us to get the results of the presidential election. As the days went on I became more tired of waiting and more anxious for the result,” Fry said.
In the 2020 election, voters saw record turnout all across the board in every demographic, with tens of millions more people voting then in a normal election. This, for many, was a pleasant sight, including senior Olivia Larson.
“You see so many politically oriented bumper stickers and banners, but to actually stand in line and go through the voting process is a whole other level of commitment,” Larson said.
“When I tried to get people in the community to caucus for Warren, a lot of younger voters didn’t even know how to register to vote or caucus. So seeing so many of my friends and family get involved like they haven’t before was a really good feeling,” she added.