Voting Inquiry

1-Compelling Question

Can we make an educated guess of how someone is going to vote based solely on their demographics?

2-Mastery Activity

How Do We Vote?

Use your knowledge of US politics, the internet, and your textbook to answer the questions below. Predict how the people below will vote in the 2016 presidential election: D=Democrat; R=Republican. Highlight each demographic feature of each person listed below and put the letter D or R above each feature. In other words, in question 1 below, female, Jewish, New York City are demographic features of this voter. Extension: Write the % likelihood that each person will vote. For example, you might think that the person in question 1 has about a 78% likelihood of voting. Use your text and the 2016 exit polls to complete this assignment. You can take an online quiz version of this exercise! And here's some fun voter id cards you can cut out, give to students, and have them place under the titles, Republican and Democrat. Enjoy!

1.    I am a female Jewish lawyer who lives in New York City.


2.    I am a white male Protestant bank executive who lives in Charlotte, NC.


3.    I am a female Catholic Latino consultant who lives in Miami, FL.


4.    I am a male Muslim African-American teacher who lives in Cleveland, OH.


5.    I am a white male rancher who lives in Cody, Wyoming.


6.    I am a female 72 year-old retiree who lives on Social Security in Denver, CO.


7.    I am a white male entrepreneur from Jackson, MS who earns more than $250,000 a year.


8.    I am a White pizza delivery guy without a high school diploma from Philadelphia, PA.


  • Add one demographic aspect to each of the voters above to alter their political party affiliation.

  • List the main media outlet each of the above voters consumes each day.

  • Put each of the above voters in a time machine. How would they vote 50 years ago.

  • Create your own strongly partisan person.

  • Democrat:

  • Republican:

  • Based on the 2016 presidential election outcome, do you think a Republican can win the presidency in 2020?

3- Informed Civic Action

Here's some things you can do with what you've learned about campaigns, parties, and elections:

  • Register to vote

  • Register others to vote

  • Figure out who to vote for. How do your beliefs align with the presidential candidates?

  • Volunteer for an interest group whose goals you support

  • Create and put up a flyer on campus urging students to support a particular candidate

  • Create and put up a flyer on campus urging students to oppose a particular candidate

  • In 1988 I created and ran a candidate for office named Adam Jeffries. I put posters all over my beautiful high school telling students about their eternal reward for voting for Mr. Jeffries. I got in trouble. Adam Jeffries didn't win. On second thought, you might not want to do this

  • Make a voting guide with information about candidates’ positions on certain issues that are important to you

  • Update your facebook status saying who you would vote for and why

  • Follow your favorite candidate on Instagram

  • If you aren't old enough to vote, convince someone old enough to vote to vote the way you wish you could vote Make a fake advertisement (video, print, digital ad) for your favorite candidate

  • We vote on Tuesday!!! Tuesday! Not a great day to get people out to the polls. Check out the Why Tuesday? website to take action on moving election day

  • Be a county poll worker at this year’s elections (it's a great service to your community and you'll get paid)

  • Make a 20 second video urging your fellow students to vote for your favorite candidate. Put a cat in your video. People love cats. Upload your video to YouTube and watch it go viral and change the outcome of the 2016 presidential election

  • Organize a students for _____________ club at your school

  • Hold a mock debate and mock election at your school

  • Invite an actual political candidate to campaign at your school

  • Add your own smart idea: