In the news

The Daily 49er
Athena Mekis

Proposition 23, which would have suspended carbon limits, failed Tuesday night.

The Cal State Long Beach student chapter of Choice USA and California Public Issues Research Group (CALPIRG) were two of the organizations that encouraged hundreds of thousands of people to vote no on Proposition 23.

Senior political science major and CALPIRG intern Ryan Paris advocated against the proposition for one main reason: health.

"I weighed the benefits of the issue and decided that clean air was the most important. If we get health problems, then our health insurance increases and that's more important than helping out businesses," Paris said.

Choice USA registered 800 voters on campus and CALPIRG got 160,000 students to sign a pledge, promising to vote no on Propositon 23.

"No on 23 is key to creating jobs," said Andrew Jenkins, President of Choice USA and senior women's studies major. "We need to force companies to switch to clean energy. Companies need to be innovative. There are so many avenues to clean energy."

Choice USA members were positive that the proposition wouldn't pass, but they had one concern: advertisements.

"Oil companies put a lot of money into advertisements," Jenkins said.

Even though CALPIRG doesn't have a chapter at Cal State Long Beach, they represent 40 campuses statewide.

They had students between the ages of 18 and 24 pledge the month before the election.

"At the end, we started to pledge citizens not just students," said CALPIRG intern and junior business major Aliya Wishmer.

Another way Wishmer made last-minute efforts to sway voters against Proposition 23 was by calling students through the phone bank at KBEACH and speaking on air about the proposition.

She believes that students and the youth in general who turned up to vote won the no vote on Proposition 23.

"This campaign was won by the students," Wishmer said.

CALPIRG is going to match the names of those who signed the pledge to their voting signature to see how the pledge affected voter's decisions.

 "Awesome," is the one word to describe the students' reaction.

"Activist work is what got this [proposition] to [not] pass," Choice USA organizer and senior teaching major Ciera Carson said.

These students focused on personal communication, explaining the ins and outs of the proposition.

California is looking at the long-term by enforcing carbon limits. By finding new energy technology, other states and other countries will be able to emulate California's decisions in the larger battle against environmental sustainability, Carson said.