Students for Shapiro. But Why?
Written by Nate Weinberg (Temple University) as part of our Students for Shapiro series.
As the child of public servants, Josh Shapiro has learned and acquired many necessary and important lessons throughout his life. Josh was ultimately inspired by his parents to enter public service. Now, the amazing, intelligent students of Pennsylvania’s great Commonwealth are excited and energized to elect Josh as our next Governor. Josh and his campaign, along with Students for Shapiro, have redefined digital organizing, and the efforts are appealing to Gen-Z voters.
Josh Shapiro was seen on a chilly, Saturday afternoon on Temple University’s campus in North Philadelphia. Josh engaged with groups of student voters for over an hour: taking fisheye lens pictures, snapping BeReals, and filming TikToks. This is what true engagement to Get Out the Vote (GOTV) from the college-aged electorate looks like. Generation Z and young people across Pennsylvania will help decide the future of our great Commonwealth by voting for Josh Shapiro as Pennsylvania’s next governor.
A little less than a month out from November 8th‘s midterm elections, Josh Shapiro’s TikTok profile has amassed over sixty thousand followers and one million likes. This engagement and digital organizing strategy have never been seen before. Josh continues to make history before he has even been elected. The engagement and content being produced by Shapiro’s campaign strongly resonates among youth voters, many of whom would be undecided if it were not for the dedication to digital organizing shown by the campaign.
Students for Shapiro, led by Josh’s eldest daughter Sophia, focuses on mobilizing students and Gen-Z supporters of Josh. S4S hosts weekly text banks which feature music, games, guest speakers, and more! This outreach is done solely by Gen-Z to Gen-Z. Young people texting young people. Through this outreach, it continues to be evident that students are organizing across this great Commonwealth for Josh and his Lt. Governor running mate, Austin Davis.
Josh’s opponent, Doug Mastriano, is anti-democracy and the wrong choice for Pennsylvania. Mastriano attended the January 6th insurrection at The Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., and crossed police barricades. In simple terms, Mastriano helped incite violence by attempting to stop the constitutional, peaceful transfer of power from occurring. Mastriano also tried to invalidate the votes of millions of Pennsylvanians and has vowed to force every Pennsylvania voter to re-register after he directs his administration to purge the voter rolls. Mastriano has vowed to ban abortion on day one, with no exceptions. Doug Mastriano is dangerous, and his policies are too radical for Pennsylvania. Simply put, Doug is a threat to our democracy.
As Attorney General, Josh has always represented all Pennsylvanians. He has protected the voice of Pennsylvania’s voters all the way up to The Supreme Court. Josh has never backed down from a fight. Josh is a firm believer in democracy and as Governor he vows to make it easier for ALL Pennsylvanians to access the ballot and engage in elections.
As Governor, Shapiro has vowed to fully fund public schools and wants to guarantee each child in Pennsylvania acquires a robust education, no matter their zip code. Josh also wants to direct funding to make schools safer and healthier, as well as to protect the crucial workforce of teachers in the Commonwealth. As a product of public schools, I worry about the future and quality of education that may be provided to Pennsylvania’s children under a different administration. Being from a well-funded municipality, I consider myself lucky and privileged to have acquired such a strong education. I am confident that under a Shapiro Administration, public schools will be fairly funded and zip codes will not be a limit or restriction to the quality of education one receives. All students in Pennsylvania deserve the same level of quality education. Josh will make that happen.
Josh has always been a staunch believer in the fundamental right to healthcare. This policy of his does not stop when it comes to women’s reproductive healthcare and the right to choose. During his time as Attorney General, Josh always stood up for reproductive rights, even against The Trump Administration. As Attorney General, he did not back down from that fight, and as Governor, Pennsylvanians can be assured he will never stop fighting for them. This is a critical time in our nation’s history when the right to women’s reproductive healthcare is on the line after The Supreme Court’s decision, Dobbs v. Jackson. The GOP-led legislature in Pennsylvania has tried to pass legislation that bans or severely restricts abortion on several occasions. The only thing protecting a women’s right to choose in Pennsylvania is the veto pen of our current, outgoing, Democratic Governor Tom Wolf. It is crucial that students in Pennsylvania GOTV to elect Josh Shapiro, who will continue in his predecessor’s footsteps and veto all legislation restricting this fundamental and basic right.
The choice is clear. Generation Z has the power to come together and organize their voices at the ballot box. Doug Mastriano is way too extreme, and dangerous for Pennsylvania. Students and young adults are organizing and mobilizing, like never seen before, to elect Josh Shapiro as Pennsylvania’s next Governor. The momentum is contagious, and students are energized to make their voices heard on November 8th. One voice, your voice, is able to encourage an incalculable number of other Pennsylvanians to vote. As Josh says, “Get off the sidelines. Get in the Game.”