Carson High School students elect Obama |

Carson High School students elect Obama

Teri Vance
Nevada Appeal Staff Writer
Cathleen Allison/Nevada Appeal

If the general election were decided by Carson High School juniors and seniors, Barack Obama would be the next president.

And Mason Bondi, 17, would be happy.

“I like the fact that Obama’s tax cut affects the younger, lower-paid groups of people,” Bondi said. “That’s us.”

That’s why he voted for Obama in the mock election Thursday organized by Jessie Sinclair, 17, for her senior project.

“For the kids who can’t vote, like me, it’s important we get our voices heard somehow,” Sinclair said. “As upperclassmen, we’ve been absorbed in the issues.”

Carson High School’s mock election was part of a nationwide Student/Parent Mock Election that included more than 100 schools.

Secretary of State Ross Miller was the state coordinator for the 2008 National Student/Parent Mock Election and worked with the Nevada Department of Education and the League of Women Voters of Northern Nevada to encourage schools throughout the state to participate in the mock election.

“The National Student/Parent Mock Election has played an important role in turning students into active voters since 1980,” said Secretary of State Ross Miller in a press release on the state’s Web site. “The program fosters voter participation at a young age and provides students with a real experience of the electoral process.”

Of the 1,005 Carson High School upperclassmen, 339 voted.

John McCain received 132 votes, while Obama pulled in 207.

Despite the outcome, Shayne Mooney, 17, voted for John McCain and assumed the majority of his classmates would as well.

“Because you’re in Nevada, that’s why,” he reasoned.

The mock election coincided with the high school’s Halloween dress-up day, so a frog, football players, turtles, a ballerina and an array of other creatures and characters lined up to cast their votes.

Maggie Jesse, 18, plans to vote for the first time on Tuesday in the general election. Although Thursday’s vote won’t count in the real election, she said it was still important to participate.

“It matters in this school,” she said.

And she wanted her voice, albeit the minority, to be heard.

“A lot of kids are voting for Obama, but I’m voting for McCain because I agree more with him,” she explained. “A lot of people aren’t looking at the issues, they’re just voting for the person.”

On the ballots, students selected their choice for president, then filled out questions to determine their gender, grade, race and who their parents are voting for.

“We’ll compare the demographics on the ballot to state and national statistics,” Sinclair said.

– Contact reporter Teri Vance at or 881-1272.