EDITOR’S NOTE: “Pulse of the Voters” has been an ongoing series to give our readers a chance to voice their concerns as we look towards the next presidential election. If you feel like your views are not represented, please contact us at email@example.com so that we can include you in our next edition of the series.
LILY — A local Laurel County resident has espoused his opinions on issues pertinent to the 2024 election cycle.
Nolan Sparks, 22, of Lily, is a registered voter (unaffiliated with party) who works at a local hotel as a concierge. Sparks was born in Corbin, and has lived in Kentucky for the vast majority of his life.
Though many have become stringently pro-Trump or pro-Biden, Sparks does not believe either candidate suits the needs of America at this time.
Despite having voted for Trump in the 2020 election, Sparks now believes that, “Trump is divisive and Biden is not fit for office to put it lightly.”
As President Trump faces legal trouble and speculation swirls about the health of President Biden, Sparks believes that other candidates would ultimately prove to be more effective leaders.
In particular, Sparks believes that Republican candidate Vivek Ramaswamy, who is much younger than either Trump or Biden, would be better fit at this point in time.
One issue important to Sparks and many other Kentucky voters is gun rights.
Sparks acknowledges that some guns, such as assault weapons, should not be widely available to the public.
But Sparks also believes that many people misunderstand the meaning of “assault weapon” and that some proposed gun legislation goes too far and would ultimately breach the rights of Americans to keep and bear arms.
He said, “I don’t believe that many people understand exactly what an assault weapon is.”
Illegal immigration was also a topic of discussion.
Nationally, immigration has been a central theme of political debate for over a decade. But, following a surge of immigration in recent years, the issue has become more relevant than ever.
On this issue, Sparks said, “I do understand that, in places such as Mexico, (immigrants) are trying to escape bad circumstances, but there is a legal process to get here…and from what I understand it is not a hard process to go through.”
In light of the current conflict in Israel and Ukraine, there is an increasing feeling amongst young Americans that the United States gives too much financial aid to foreign countries, especially while many Americans are struggling to make ends meet at home.
Sparks agreed with this sentiment, stating: “I personally do not feel as though the United States should be putting our interests in the Middle East at all anymore.”
As many Americans struggle with rising prices, Sparks also stated that he too had felt the impact of inflation.
“You can just tell from your bill at the grocery store,” he said, adding, “These are the most expensive used cars I have ever seen.”
Nationally, the 2024 election is sure to be a matter of great importance for young and old alike. This election, not unlike the last, seems to be a pivotal moment in American history.