Mock election teaches students about democracy, Electoral College

Not even John C. Bowling could beat Donald Trump.

Law and Politics Society (LPS) set up a race booth in Ludwig during lunch and dinner hours for students to cast their vote in a mock presidential election from Oct. 3 to Nov. 2. Students had the option of voting for nationally known candidates, Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Gary Johnson and Jill Stein. They also had the option of voting for lesser known candidates like Dr. John Bowling, Canada, Mike Pence, John Kasich and Evan McMullin.

The votes were tallied by the LPS board members on the evening of Nov. 4. Donald Trump won with 46 percent of the votes, Hillary Clinton came in second with 21 percent, followed by Gary Johnson with 19 percent. Jill Stein received five percent, Dr. Bowling received 2 percent, and Canada, Pence, Kasich, and McMullin all finished with one percent of votes.

“I think the fact that Olivet is a Christian-affiliated private school did influence the results of the Mock Election, but maybe not as much as people would think,” LPS board member Elizabeth Lanham said. “A lot of people assume that all Christians are Republicans, but I personally know a lot of Christians that voted for Hillary or Third Party for specific Christian purposes.”

The LPS hosted an election viewing night in Weber where students could come watch as the results were announced, and “eat their feelings,” according to the event.

Students could also participate in an Electoral Map Challenge, where they could fill out an Electoral Map by assigning states to the candidates and the person who got it correct would win a gift card sponsored by LPS. While there were many views and positions represented at the party, all of those in attendance could agree on the fact that the election was an exciting and thought provoking experience.

“I think that this election should be viewed as a learning lesson on why it should be important to be involved in the public arena at the local and national level,” said LPS President Corrie Stout. “I think we may want to look at getting away from a two-party system, and learn about civic involvement and duty.”

“I think it’s absurd that not only Christians, but majority of Americans choose not to exercise their right to vote,” attendee of the election viewing party Lauren Schneider said. “There are countries that do not have this freedom, and many people fought for us to have this right. America cannot continue to take that freedom for granted.”

LPS Board Member Mattheus Mitchel encouraged those who are wary of the results of the election that, “regardless of who wins the presidency, God is still in control and at the end of the day, that is what truly matters.”

For any questions regarding the Mock Election, or involvement in the Law and Politics Society, contact Jake Wagner, Center for Law and Culture Intern at jmwagner@olivet.edu, or Joshua Dille, Law and Politics Society Secretary at jmdille@olivet.edu.

 

— Mackenzie Mehaffey, Staff Writer

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