If I were American, I would vote for Obama – By Kenyan-born Jackline Oluoch-Aridi

In 2008, Jackline Aridi from Kenya, was studying in the United States during election time. She was not eligible to vote, so she went from door to door in Pensylvania, urging eligible voters to register (Scroll down for the video). Four years later, Jacky tells us why she would still vote for Obama if eligible.

After watching Obama during the debates on the campaign trail, I still think he is my candidate of choice. As he said yesterday while on the stump in Wisconsin “… America our work is not yet done…” I strongly believe that he deserves four more years to finish the work of rebuilding the economy and repairing a country that has been damaged economically socially and financially by the policies of the last regime.Jackline Oluoch-Aridi

Four years ago I was a graduate student at NYU getting the vote out a few weeks to the election in Pennsylvania-a state that is sometimes ‘red’. I believed in the change that Obama, a then presidential candidate had preached about. I still believe in that change now. This is because I have been privy to witness the changes that America has undergone in the time since I moved back home. The unemployment rate which was constantly rising from 2009 had just stabilized at 7.8 percent by the time of the third debate and remains unchanged following declines in September. Osama bin Laden is dead and yes Obama care was passed early in the year despite absolutely no support from the republicans. Those three achievements by any measure are monumental and accurately present what Americans want from a President.

His competitor for the Presidency Governor Mitt Romney on the other hand has not held any policy positions; they keep changing so fast it is hard to keep track what they are and what the details behind them are. He says he plans to strengthen the middle class and get rid of employment. Yet he was caught on tape at a private event labeling middle class Americans as dependent on the American Government largesse. While I would agree Mitt Romney had some great achievements as Governor of Massachusetts such as the mandated health care (plans which forms the basis of the current Obama care) he has failed to take the hallowed higher ground on the national stage. While on the campaign stump he has vowed to revoke the passed health care bill. This kind of policy platform is what has resulted in the unacceptable high number of an estimated 19 million uninsured Americans in the developed world.

Obama and his administration has proven during times of crisis again and again that he can be calm headed and deliver to the electorate that put him here. A case in point is the damage potential damage that would have been meted to the American East coast by the Hurricane Sandy if the preparatory work of his office mobilizing the necessary agencies such as FEMA was not in place. His competitor though in the meantime was calling for the disbandment of FEMA earlier in the year.
Most importantly and relevant to me, His foreign policy stances on issues of concern to my country so aptly delivered by Hillary Clinton in her recent visit are also welcome. He has called for suspects of the 2008 post-election violence in Kenya to be tried at The Hague without fail and so has respect for jurisdiction of International bodies and the rule of law for situations that countries have failed to sort. If I was American my choice for my vote would definitely be Obama, unfortunately I have to tune my attention to my country which also has an election in the next four months that has unwieldy list of candidates that far exceeds the two the US is dealing with!

Below is a video of Jacky knocking on doors in Pennsylvania in 2008, urging eligible voters to register on time.

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