New citizen votes for Clinton, down-ballot Democrats

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Mechanical engineering sophomore Mathew Piotrowicz voted after recently becoming a U.S. citizen.
Photo Credit: Jenan Taha | Daily Texan Staff

Just two months after becoming an official U.S. citizen, Mathew Piotrowicz exercised his newly attained right to vote by casting an early ballot for Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee.

Piotrowicz, a mechanical engineering sophomore, was born in Canada and moved to Houston when he was seven before coming to UT.

“There weren’t big enough reasons for me to not vote for Hillary,” said Piotrowicz, originally a supporter of Sen. Bernie Sanders, D-Vermont. “So, I voted for Hillary.”

While Piotrowicz said his political ideology was more aligned with Sanders, he noted Clinton’s prior stances on issues important to him such as health care, college tuition and the environment had evolved throughout her longstanding political career.

“As far as her changing views on a lot of things, she was much younger,” Piotrowicz said. “And of course, people change their views over time.”

Piotrowicz also said the FBI’s decision in July to not pursue charges on Clinton for her private email server helped justify his decision to vote for her.

Piotrowicz said the Republican nominee would be a “detriment to the country,” and added he didn’t believe Trump was “level-headed enough” to be the next commander-in-chief.

“A lot of the things he says don’t align with me politically,” Piotrowicz said. “Shutting down the border or not letting Muslims into our country — I don’t agree with that.”

Piotrowicz also said his parents, Polish immigrants who aren’t yet U.S. citizens, carried an anti-Russian sentiment — something Piotrowicz said trickled down to him.

“[Trump] has said good things about Putin,” Piotrowicz said. “And that doesn’t rub me the right way.”

Piotrowicz said he voted for a straight Democratic ticket and said he would be shocked if Trump won on Election Day.

“Right now,” Piotrowicz said. “I think Clinton has a pretty good chance of winning.”