Obama is kids’ choice here

By Megan Moser

In addition to winning the general election, President Obama performed well Tuesday with an important but politically irrelevant demographic: kids.

A total of 3,857 USD 383 students in grades K-12 cast their ballots during a Kids Voting Kansas program hosted by K-State’s Institute for Civic Discourse and Democracy and Manhattan Konza Rotary.

Obama garnered 2,166 votes, while Mitt Romney received 1,521 votes. Libertarian Gary Johnson had 105 and Reform Party candidate Chuck Baldwin had 91.

That means the president took 56 percent of the vote in the local kids election, compared with 41 percent among Riley County adults.

The Institute for Civic Discourse and Democracy set up polling booths in every school to give students an authentic voting experience, said Amanda Meinhardt, volunteer coordinator.

“They signed in on a class roster, stepped into the booth, filled out their ballots, placed them in ballot boxes, and then received “I Voted” stickers,” she said.

The purpose of Kids Voting is to educate youth and excite them about the democratic process, she said.

Fifty-four volunteers from K-State, Manhattan Area Retired Educators Association and League of Women Voters helped facilitate the event.

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