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Voter registration deadline today Campus holds rally to increase participation

Finance senior Zulema Gracia (left) and pre-dental biology senior Vania Soler register to vote last Tuesday in the Student Union on the Edinburg campus. GABRIEL MATA/ THE RIDER

Today marks the last day to register to vote for the March 1 primary election, where Texas voters may participate in choosing their party’s nominees for the presidential and local county races through secret ballot.

Early voting in the primary election begins Feb. 16 and ends Feb. 26 statewide. The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Edinburg Campus will be an early voting site between these dates from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Additional polling locations and times can be found in each county’s website.

Last Tuesday, the university hosted a Vaqueros Vote Rally in the Student Union Commons on the Edinburg campus. On Wednesday, the event took place on the Student Union lawn in Brownsville.

During this event, UTRGV students, staff, and faculty registered to vote from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and received free pizza after registering.

Biology and mechanical engineering junior Ezequiel Tijerina said he was already a registered voter before but thought this event was great.

“The fact that you guys have this event on campus is actually going to persuade more people to actually vote,” Tijerina said. “We just stop by and it doesn’t even take more than five minutes to actually register. I’m also kind of grateful that you guys are giving out free pizza.”

Tijerina also weighed in on the presidential campaign.

“There’s good and bad candidates. To be honest, I feel like maybe Bernie Sanders has a good outcome and also Hillary Clinton,” he said. “Hopefully, the best one wins.”

Cassandra Lopez, a biology freshman, also attended the event.

“Just coming in here and seeing everybody is the reason why I came,”

Lopez said. “I think it’s great what they are doing, helping students so they can register.”


Student Union Assistant Director Massiel Muñoz and event host, said the event had a great turnout.

“We have great pizza and great turnout, lots of questions, and everyone seems interested and excited about theelections, so that’s wonderful,” Muñoz said, “If they have a question, we tell them about the process.” Muñoz said there was also a handful of faculty and staff that registered.

“We are also going to UNIV classes and encouraging students to register.” Muñoz said she spoke to two UNIV classes and registered 20 additional student voters.

For more information on requirements for registering to vote, visit the Texas Secretary of State website at www.sos. state.tx.us.

For Hidalgo County, visit www.co.hidalgo.tx.us or call the Voter Registration Office at 318-2570. For Cameron County, visit www.co.cameron.tx.us or call the Cameron County Department of Elections & Voters Registration at 544-0809.

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