Advance Notice: Briefs

Whitmer, Gilchrist thank college-aged voters

By: - November 18, 2022 12:32 pm

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer takes a selfie with attendees of a rally with Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg in Ann Arbor, Mich. on Nov. 4, 2022. (Andrew Roth/Michigan Advance)

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist penned a letter to Michigan’s college students Thursday thanking them for showing up in record numbers in the midterm election.

“No matter why you went to the polls or who you voted for, thank you. You waited in line — sometimes for hours — to make your voice heard,” the two re-elected incumbents wrote. “Thank you for participating in our democracy and please know that it’s our goal that you never have to face those long wait times again! It is our honor to serve you for four more years, and we promise that we will work hard every day to make you proud.”

Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer speak to reporters in East Lansing following the final rally of their re-election campaign on Nov. 7, 2022. (Andrew Roth/Michigan Advance)

Michiganders passed Proposal 3 in 2018, which allows for same-day voter registration. This year, lines on college campuses were longer than many other polling places because of the number of students registering for the first time or changing their address. 

At Michigan State University, 1,434 students registered to vote on Election Day, which was a record for East Lansing. University of Michigan also had nearly 1,500 new registered voters on Nov. 8.

According to the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement, a research organization through Tufts University, 62% of Michigan’s youth vote went to Whitmer and 36% of the youth vote went to Republican Tudor Dixon. Whitmer won by an 11-point margin.

“Your success is Michigan’s success, and we will work with anyone to make sure that you can build your future here in our beautiful state. When it comes time to decide where you want to live, work, start a business, or raise a family, we want the answer to be Michigan,” the letter read. “Together, we will continue getting things done to improve your on-campus life, protect your reproductive freedom, and ensure you have every opportunity to succeed when you graduate.”

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Allison R. Donahue
Allison R. Donahue

Allison R. Donahue is a former Michigan Advance reporter who covered education, women's issues and LGBTQ issues. Previously, she was a suburbs reporter at the St. Cloud Times in St. Cloud, Minn., covering local education and government. As a graduate of Grand Valley State University, she has previous experience as a freelance researcher for USA Today and an intern with WOOD TV-8. When she is away from her desk, she spends her time going to concerts, comedy shows or getting lost on hikes in different places around the world.