Colorado Voters on the Importance of the 2020 Elections
“It’s the most important election of my lifetime.” Colorado voters repeatedly shared this message with Antonia as she conducted in-person (COVID-safe) interviews at polling stations throughout the Colorado Front Range in the lead up to and on Election Day 2020. Interviews took place in Fort Lupton in Weld County, where 90% of oil and 30% of natural gas is produced in the state–principally via fracking, Boulder, and Lafayette. Antonia’s interviews focused on women, particularly those with children, and her questions on climate, energy, and equity. She spoke with both Biden and Trump voters, though the former heavily outnumbered the latter.
Listen to all of the interviews here:
October 19, Boulder, CO. — On the first day of in-person voting in Boulder County, Antonia interviewed voters at the Boulder County Clerk & Recorder Building. Randomly interviewing 15 people, she found 13 were voting for Biden, and 2 for Trump. (These interviews featured in the Oct. 29 show).
“I believe that there’s a problem with our climate, and I believe in science, and I want to vote to change the leadership that makes decisions moving forward with that. Because with no planet, we have no place to live. And we have to save it for our kids, and for future generations.”Hilary, Biden voter in Boulder, CO.
“I think that this is the most important election of our lifetime. Our mountains are burning, and the person in office doesn’t really care that much about other people, and doesn’t have empathy…It’s extremely important that we make our voices heard and find somebody that cares about the things we care about, like each other and the environment.”Kim, a Biden voter in Boulder, CO
“We need to change the direction of this country.” There are so many things to be addressed, “climate, civil rights, racism, everything.”Isabel Enright, originally from Mexico, Biden Voter, Boulder, Colorado.
“The most important issues are climate change, foreign policy, COVID, systemic racism… On climate: we need to get back into the Paris Climate Accord, that’s key. We’re the only country in the world, even Syria is a part of that, and we’re not and that’s shameful. And then you just see all the climate problems, our fires here, California, flooding, Brazil it’s affecting everything.”Susan Martich, Biden Voter, Boulder, CO.
“I totally support oil and gas. I support the oil and gas industry everywhere, it’s vital to our livelihood.”Julie, Trump voter.
Molly Fitzpatrick, Boulder County Clerk & Recorder, enthusiastically urged Coloradans to vote early by mail, drop-off or in-person: “Early voting helps us!”
October 24 – Antonia ran into Jeanine Pow, Voter Registration Drive Coordinator for the League of Women Voters of Boulder, holding a sign on 28th Street and Belmont. Pow explained that she was taking part in the League’s sign project in which members stand at busy corners with signs encouraging people to vote with confidence and advertising the Vote411.org website, which provides non-partisan election information in English and Spanish.
“One of our core principles is to encourage people to vote, and to vote intelligently, and that’s why I’m here…I think this is the most important election of my life, and I’m 71 years old.”
October 31, Fort Lupton, Weld County, CO. Weld County is the site of 90% of oil produced in Colorado and 30% of all natural as, virtually all via fracking. Just across the street from one polling place, Antonia took a picture of this crude oil site immediately adjacent to homes. There were just a handful of in-person voters visiting the site and most were using the drive-through drop-off box, making interviews virtually impossible.
“I think the country’s in a critical point, and we have to take a chance to restore it to a better situation.”Anonymous Weld County voter
Nov. 2 Boulder County Clerk Building — On November 2, the day before the election, Antonia returned to Boulder, where she talked to Colorado voter and Peru-native Corina as she enthusiastically dropped off her ballot by bike.
“I’m from Peru and this is my second presidential election and I’m very excited for it. In this election, I think we can change our destinies to make it more about the people, maybe start a new path. It’s important to make our voices be heard…We can make a difference. Vengan a votar en el county clerk — están muchas personas para ayudarles, traigan su voto.” – Corina, in Boulder, CO.
Nov. 3 Fort Lupton, Weld County – On election day, Antonia returned to Fort Lupton to speak with voters.
“The main reason [I’m voting] is, it’s your duty as an American to vote, so here I am… Hopefully, we see a change. COVID and immigration are the most important things to me right now… My mother [a Mexican immigrant who suffered from COVID] is thankfully now a U.S. citizen, but so many others I know who have been here for years, who I went to high school with, cannot get their papers… they wish they could be voting here. So, that’s one reason I’m here, to be a voice for them.”Diana, Biden voter, Fort Lupton, CO.
“I’m voting today because it’s super important as women, it’s important that my kids see this, [and] understand that this wasn’t always a right we had. [Pushing her toddler] I usually bring my 6 year old. As a mother and as a professional I think it’s important [to vote]…educate yourself and that you’re active. This year more than ever.”Sarah, voter, Fort Lupton, CO.
Nov. 3 Lafayette, CO. — On election day Antonia also spoke to voters in Lafayette, Colorado.
“We really need somebody who’s gonna take climate change seriously…and just somebody that I can have my kids watch on the news, and not feel like they’re setting an example that I wouldn’t want them to see.”Katie Genauer, Biden voter, Lafayette, CO.
“I’m a new mother. I have a two-year-old and a five-month-old. It’s really important to vote right now… I want to raise my children in a less divisive country… I’m hopeful for the future.”Paige Lacour, Lafayette, CO.
Nov. 4 Election Night — On Election night, Antonia spoke with Michele Weindling, Federal Campaign Director for the Sunrise Movement, who described their historic election organizing efforts. (Listen to the full interview here)
“Young people see the intersections of every issue come together in this election. This is an election about the people, and about fighting for our communities and so many of us, myself included, have felt the effects of the climate crisis more than ever…We’ve been seeing young people unite and rise up to demand better, calling out racial injustice and systemic racism, and I think this is really the moment…We have hope, and we believe we can make change.”