Ninth graders Sara Pugh, Aimee Lotz and Melodie Houston get "I voted Stickers" from history and government teacher Melissa Weisberg, who dressed like Sarah Palin, after voting at Christian Heritage School's mock election Tuesday afternoon.

Photo by John F. Russell

Ninth graders Sara Pugh, Aimee Lotz and Melodie Houston get "I voted Stickers" from history and government teacher Melissa Weisberg, who dressed like Sarah Palin, after voting at Christian Heritage School's mock election Tuesday afternoon.

Christian Heritage picks McCain in student vote

School's Tuesday ballot was part of the National Student/Parent Mock Election event

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— Republican presidential hopeful John McCain won in a landslide Tuesday.

Students in fifth through 12th grade at Christian Heritage School cast their ballots Tuesday for their presidential pick, with McCain sweeping other candidates with 42 of the 63 votes. Democrat Barack Obama and independent Ralph Nader tied for second with nine votes apiece.

Students cited reasons from the economy to abortion as their deciding factor.

Andrea Clark, a sixth-grader, said she cast her vote for McCain because she agreed with his stances.

"I voted for him because he's a Republican, and I'm a Republican, and he doesn't support abortion," she said.

The poll, organized by Melissa Weisberg's Advanced Placement Government class, is part of the National Student/Parent Mock Election. Voting will conclude later this week and national results will be announced before the general election Nov. 4.

The Christian Heritage School event also had some bipartisan electioneering at the polls by both major party candidates, with seniors John Cutter in a McCain mask and Jared Finch in an Obama mask. The seniors said they picked the masks by chance, but they also supported the candidate they represented.

Weisberg joined the students. She dressed as Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin.

Weisberg said she expected McCain to win the students votes, but she was surprised Obama garnered as many votes as he did - even though he earned just 14 percent of the total.

"I was a little bit surprised how many votes Obama got, just from hearing the kids talk. It was higher than I thought," she said.

Despite the tide against them, Kirsten Williams and Leah Berdine showed their support for Obama by wearing homemade T-shirts with his name, peace signs and pro-Obama stickers.

Both of the sophomores said they had visited the Obama campaign headquarters in Steamboat Springs and weren't afraid to show their preference, even though they were outnumbered.

"Up to today, I haven't been very bold about what I thought," Williams said. "My school is totally pro-McCain, and I was intimidated."

Williams said the visit to the headquarters also inspired her to work for the campaign, which she will do in the days leading up to the national vote.

"My parents are pro-Obama, but even if they were voting McCain, I would support Obama," she said.

Libertarian candidate Bobb Barr, HeartQuake '08 candidate Jonathan Allen and Green Party candidate Cynthia McKinney also received one vote from the students.

Comments

playa46 5 years, 11 months ago

I like to see kids expressing their views to this election.

However, some of these reasons are just simple ones "I am a rep. and so is McCain".

However, it is still good to see this, I should hope this happens in my school as well. :)

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knee_dropper 5 years, 11 months ago

Sounds like the kids are being well indoctrinated by the church.
Nice job proof-reading Pilot, shows how well spell check works.

"Weisberg said she expected McCain to win the students votes, but she was surprised Obama garnered as many votes as he died - even though he earned just 14 percent of the total."

Yeah that says a lot if a dead candidate can collect that percentage of the vote against McCain in a Christian school. Keep up the good work Pilot.

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Duke_bets 5 years, 11 months ago

12 year olds commenting on abortion. That is absurd!

The school should probably teach philosophies the children may understand, such as English and Mathematics.

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Matthew Stoddard 5 years, 11 months ago

Fred- All of your children went to SSHS and turned out okay from what I can tell, didn't they?

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Duke_bets 5 years, 11 months ago

Fred - Actually, the only academic system that sways towards a political affiliate is the religious schools. Like yourself, they will preach their beliefs to anyone who will listen. The overwhelming audience happens to be 12-16 year olds. Like I stated before, 12 year olds commenting on abortion is absolutely absurd! What do you think of the Palin costume? There's a stellar role model for the youth, by golly. 'C'mon America, let's all go gut a moose and have babies at the age of 45'. And, you might want to check the stats book on the percentage of low income and welfare recipients that vote much like you.

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Kevin Chapman 5 years, 11 months ago

A right slanted article based on information derived from a right slanted religiously based school. Why doesn't our paper think about these things? Maybe a republican editor? Maybe not. So take this same situation to a public school, where influence is minimal and lets see the outcome. Only one rule, none of the teachers gets to dress up as a candidate- especially not one who has been found to have used her status to influence state emplyoees. Are you kidding me?

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JLM 5 years, 11 months ago

Yeah, the next thing you know they will strapping dynamite on and blowing up Lyons Drug. Give it a rest, loony lefties!

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Fred Duckels 5 years, 11 months ago

Our academic system is overwhelming leftist and trying to propagate the same socialist secular views on our young. All the while we all get to pay the bill wether we like it or not. I don"t suppose any leftists will have to cover Heritage Schools bills and it is not likely that their students will be riding the welfare rolls in the future.

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playa46 5 years, 11 months ago

Nice SteamboatNucs,

I would like this at a public school rather than a christain one, at least the aren't too brainwashed their.

As for JLM, are you proposing that Christains are suicide bombers? If that's the case, I too will be one. XD Good sarcastic post.

Fred- Well, the propoganda you so speak of is working. Many of the kids in my school support BO over JM. And I agree with many other commenters, it's probably because we see things a little brighter than our friend at Heritage. While I too, am christian, I feel more exposed to my options, rather than just following rules.

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Matthew Stoddard 5 years, 11 months ago

Nucs- Routt County is mostly Republican outside of Steamboat city limits. Steamboat is mostly Democrat. Granted, since Steamboat makes up the majority of the county poplulation, your statement holds true, though.

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JLM 5 years, 11 months ago

Be nice to your friends over @ Heritage. You'll be working for one of them one day soon, playa. LOL

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Kevin Chapman 5 years, 11 months ago

Duckels, Your comments are just jibber jabber and assumptions. Do you have some proof that our school system is overwhelmingly leftist? An unbiased public school poll would be great. A Christian school is a ridiculous place to have a poll done. Luckily Routt county is largely democrat (see last presidential election results) and the religious zealots have only so much say in how things are done around here. Please keep church and state separate!! Socialism = Palin taking money from BIG OIL and "spreading the wealth" to her constituents in Alaska?

Wouldn't Palin's idea of banning abortion be a fascist gov't telling it's people what they can and can't do with their own body? Or is that dictatorship? Doesn't matter, she will be back in Alaska soon enough

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Kevin Chapman 5 years, 11 months ago

And therefore i decided yes, i WOULD like to live here, despite some contractors view that every place sacred-( i.e. Howelsen Hill) Should have a highway running through it or houses constructed on it. Thank you , Matthew, i am well aware of my surroundings. Thank goodness we are a democracy.

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John Cutter 5 years, 11 months ago

Why is this a beacon of criticism and distaste? I am a senior at Christian Heritage School and was the "biased" and "church indoctrinated" student who wore the McCain mask. I would like to shed yet more light on this "ridiculous" and "absurd" event. The National Student/Parent Mock Election (NSME) is an organized activity for schools throughout the nation. The main desire of this event is purely educational. Their mission statement is as follows: The National Student/Parent Mock Election seeks to turn the sense of powerlessness that keeps young Americans and their parents from going to the polls into a sense of the power of participation in our democracy. One of the most important ways to increase students' sense of significance and power is to use the Mock Election to take them out of the classroom and into the real world. One can find their site at http://www.nationalmockelection.org/index.html. One can use the above link as well to see a list of supporters for this organization. One will see that its supporters are nation-wide and none claim religious affiliations. In the mission statement one will see, as well, that the desire of NSME is to educate and allow the students to express their opinions. Once again, why is this a beacon of such hate? The NSME opens its doors to any school to sign up. It was said earlier, "a Christian school is a ridiculous place to hold a poll" or "I would rather see this at SSHS." SSHS was more than welcome to join in on this national experience, however, they did not and Christian Heritage School did and for this we are persecuted? And no I'm not trying to sound like a martyr.
The results of the poll should not have been the primary focus of the journalist. This event was to open up the eyes of the students at CHS and excite them about their civic duties once they reach the age of 18. It makes me sad that what was intended as harmless and educational received such a cold glare in the public eye.

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playa46 5 years, 11 months ago

John-

We are not "persecuting" you, we are commenting on the radical decisions of the Pilot to make a news story saying "McCain wins by landside at a CHRISTIAN school" and decided to say it was very shocking.

Don't get too down, I too am a christian and at SSHS, I will be ridiculed by others for my believes.

My point is, there is nothing wrong with the school, just the idea of the news story.

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John Cutter 5 years, 11 months ago

Playa46, I appreciate your clarification but, with all due respect, it seems that you don't understand your own words. As you've quoted earlier: "we see things a little brighter than our friend at Heritage." "I would like this at a public school rather than a christain one, at least the aren't too brainwashed their." Now I do agree with the latter statement in respect that it would be great to see a poll taken at SSHS, but your first comment and the latter half of the second are taken as insulting to the school and my classmates. It may seem to the outside viewer that a student placed in CHS is ignorant, kept in the dark, or "brainwashed" but this is far from the truth. Yes, our school does promote a christian based educational system and surroundings, however, if one were to quiz a CHS student on the teachings and history of Darwin one would find that they are fully capable of answering and are just as "in the light" as an SSHS student. Our teachers and students are involved in the world just as much as anyone else is. Our education is different from a public school, but don't assume that the average CHS student is ignorant or turning a blind eye to the world.

As I said earlier, Playa46, I appreciate the clarification.

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howard_roark 5 years, 11 months ago

i think we are all missing the real issue here. who voted for ralph nadar?

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playa46 5 years, 11 months ago

I guess, when I used the term "brainwashing", I took it a little too far. What I meant John, is that Republicans are typically Christians, not saying that some aren't, however. Not to be too insulting, I am just saying that a christian typically will vote Republican. However, there are lots of Christians who are Democratic and plenty of Republicans who are Atheists or Agnostic.

The proof is kind of in the polls at your school.

The reason why I said at a Public School is because there is more diversity in Religions and Beliefs. I understand that your school's students know a lot about Darwinism, but I am sure that you support McCain, yes?

I am sorry if I offended you, please understand that and I will not do so in the future.

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peevla 5 years, 11 months ago

Is it possible the Steamboat Pilot has been bought out by Fox News? One may as well endorse a candidate and get it over with. Please grow some hair and talk about issues affecting the people without pandering to advertisers and you own political agenda. I think I speak for a majority of readers. Thanks!

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