Seniors Mock Election

Seniors, have you registered to vote? We will soon graduate, and by the next election, every one of us will be eligible to vote. Some may feel unprepared, so this year Park City High School is holding its own election for students to get a taste of a real world election.

Ms. Pinkney’s senior AP Government class is holding its first ever Congressional Mock Election with the school’s political enthusiasts. There are students from all sides of the political spectrum, including Liberal Candidates Zane Schemmer, Eli Levine, and Avi Gregory; Conservative Candidates Wyatt Hudgens, Texas Prichard, and Matthew Gustafson; and third party candidate Billy Honey, running for the Shrimp Conservation Party.


Candidates have been working hard since November 9, 2017, when the candidates and their campaign staff were announced. The first step for the candidates was to get signatures from 5% of the senior class in order to be eligible to run in the election. The next step was raising money by getting “donations” from any student, including juniors and sophomores. Students could donate up to $2,700 per candidate to support their campaign efforts.


The seven candidates are not the only ones working hard throughout this process. All students in Ms. Pinkney’s government classes have a position and are working behind the scenes to promote their candidates and ensure a fair election day. They hold positions helping with communications, consulting, secretarial duties, targeting and finance.


Ms. Pinkney began her unit with a basic understanding of the development of the campaign process, but she wanted to further the knowledge of her students. She explains students “are very engaged in the class” and the simulation is “based on the kids and their interest in the subject.”


Ms. Pinkney elaborated further, sharing her overall goal of the whole process: “I want to get young people engaged in politics. Our country is being run by people who have been there for a very long time and are in their seventies and eighties. We need young blood.”


The results of the Primary Election from November 28, 2017 are as followed:

Conservative Wyatt Hudgens won by the skin of his teeth to runner up Texas Prichard.

Liberal Zane Schemmer swept the competition with his compelling charisma.

Shrimp Conservationist Billy Honey stood strong with the brine shrimp.


Here is an overall view on each candidate.


Zane Schemmer (Liberal)

Z-Eazy, Z-right choice, Z-Zane choice, all of these slogans represent Schemmer. He and his campaign staff are working hard to promote the preservation of land and other environmental conservation efforts, as well as increasing educational funding.


Wyatt Hudgens (Conservative)

WyNot? This is the question Hudgens is asking. Acknowledging he is a conservative running in a generally liberal town, he asks voters, “voting for a conservative candidate…WyNot?” Hudgens and staff are working towards increasing education spending, as well as increasing economic development and stimulation in the district.


Billy Honey (Shrimp Conservation)

Save the Shrimp Save Yourself. This is the face of Honey’s campaign. Honey focuses on the salvation of the Brine Shrimp in the Great Salt Lake. Focusing on the economic benefits of the Brine Shrimp in Utah, Honey discusses issues “other politicians are afraid to address.”


Both Hudgens and Schemmer “share common ground” on one aspect of the election as Hudgens says, claiming Honey is not their biggest competitor. Schemmer simply states, “Independents don’t win elections, and I’m not so sure about his Brine Shrimp platform.”


Hudgens responds with a more complicated answer: “I don’t consider Schemmer my biggest competitor as much as I don’t consider Honey my biggest competitor.” So does this mean he claims he is his own biggest competitor? He leaves that for you to decide.


Even after throwing shade at Honey, both express their love for his character and respect for his dedication. Honey backs up his place in the competition: “Politicians just don’t want to believe in our party. People are tired of being pushed to the side, being told they have to vote Republican or Democrat, and we are expanding the box.” Honey also adds, when asked about his biggest competitor, that “it would have to be Zane Schemmer. He is just a cute looking dude.”


After the success of this “pilot year”, Ms. Pinkney has decided to make the mock election a tradition for the years to come. Everyone in the class is invested in the campaign and are reminding all seniors to vote in the General Election on December 12, 2017!