Trumpets and trombones are at stance, the tensions grow from the left and right. The room is split from red and blue, with no purple in the middle. The Republican party goes first, they announce their candidate, Brielle Mitchell. They throw confetti and cheer, waiting for the Democratic party. The name, Ian Smith, appeared on the board, and the candidate ran up and clicked his heels.
Michael Otto, the AP Government teacher recently oversaw his classes’ mock elections for the fourth year in a row. This the relevant to students now more than ever, as most seniors will be of voting age by the time the United States Presidential race for the 2020 election comes to a close.
“I started this during my first year teaching government which was four years ago now,” Otto said. “At the time it was the 2016 election, now we’re approaching the 2020 election, so we come full circle.”
In first period, candidates Smith and Mitchell work together in debate, but in AP Government they ran against each other with opposing ideas and stances. Throughout the project they were pitted against each other while being thrown obstacles and challenges. Obstacle likes a congressional scandal or gerrymandering the states in their favor. Students who didn’t run for office were still a part of the Democratic and Republican campaign party, and had to fund raise and manage money for the campaign.
“They have to know stages of election anyway, they have to know about the primaries, they have to know about fundraising, they have to know about the conventions, they have to know about the debate process, they have to know essentially about how the general election rolls out, and then who votes for whom, demographically, and in terms of states, regionally,” Otto said.
Special guest, AP World History teacher Melissa Taylor crashed Otto’s class, and introduced the Democratic Party with a very passionate speech. She played along in the simulation of the debates, and energetically proclaimed why the people and the White House needs a democratic president sitting in the oval office.
After the Democratic party’s charismatic introduction, Smith was required to speak about his stance to change, and on how to make the United States a better country
“I’m unifying the country under a democratic flag,” Smith said.
Meanwhile, Mitchell played a progressive Republican party candidate, planning on making big moves.
“I decided to run for president because I thought it was a really unique opportunity and I wanted to really immerse myself in the best way I could,” Mitchell said.