Last Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016, some Saipan Southern High School students had their first experience of voting with a mock election at their school.
Three hundred and seventeen students at Saipan Southern High School participated the SSHS Close-Up 2016 U.S. Presidential Mock Election. Most of the participating students came from Social Studies classes. Participating students also included students from other classes, grade levels, and backgrounds.
Anyone willing to express their opinion on who should be the next U.S. president cast their ballot last Thursday at the school’s library.
Saipan Southern High School’s Close Up Club hosted the event to learn more about its students’ opinion on this year’s presidential election. The club hopes that this event could possibly fulfill their mission of “informing, inspiring, and empowering young people to exercise their responsibilities as a citizen.”
Although unofficial, mock elections still play a role in students’ knowledge about the voting process. Though not exactly representative of how the U.S. President is elected—knowing about the Electoral College process—students were still given an opportunity to physically experience voting and become cognizant about their voting rights and responsibilities as a citizen.
Students who cast their ballots chose among the four candidates: Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Jill Stein, and Gary Johnson. Out of the 317 votes, 71 percent voted for Democratic candidate Clinton, 11 percent voted for Republican candidate Trump, 11 percent voted for Libertarian candidate Johnson, and 7 percent voted for Green Party candidate Stein. The presidential candidate that obtained majority of the votes in the mock election this year was Hillary Clinton, who garnered 226 votes.
For the past 10 years, mock elections results of Saipan Southern High School have successfully called the winner.
The SSHS Close Up officers and advisor were grateful that the Mock Election emerged as a successful event. They hope that this tradition will continue in future years.