Andover Participates in National Poll; Obama Wins

In an online mock election last week among Andover students, 61.67 percent of respondents said that they would vote for President Barack Obama in the upcoming presidential election. Romney received 31.70 percent of the votes.

1,132 students responded to the poll, which was conducted by the Andover Republican Society, PA Democrats Club and Andover Political Union.

The poll was part of Voting Opportunity for Teenagers in Every State (VOTES), a nationwide project that has students vote in a mock election.

In the poll, students voted for their preferred candidate for President of the United States as well as on six questions of controversial policy.

63.69 percent of the surveyed students said that it is the responsibility of the federal government to ensure all Americans have healthcare coverage.

The majority of the surveyed students said that they would not support a Federal Marriage Amendment to the Constitution that limits the definition of marriage to between a man and a woman. 84.73 percent said that they would oppose this amendment, while 14.98 percent said they would support it. 0.29 percent left the question unanswered.

The results of the mock election closely matched those of The Phillipian’s political poll published in last week’s issue. In The Phillipian’s poll, 65.3 percent of 636 respondents said that they would vote for Obama, while 29.4 percent said Romney.

In both polls, the remaining votes were given to Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party, Jill Stein of the Green Party and Virgil Goode of the Constitution Party.

70.03 percent of respondents opposed the Supreme Court ruling in the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission case, which effectively prohibits the government from limiting campaign and political funding from corporations. 27.95 percent supported the decision. 2.02 percent of the surveyed students left the question unanswered.

Asked what method of reducing the federal budget deficit is best, 44.09 percent of the respondents said the government should combine tax increases and spending cuts. 33.72 percent said that the U.S. should reduce taxes and cut federal spending, while 21.90 percent of the surveyed students said that taxes should be increased for Americans earning more than $250,000 in order to compensate for the federal budget deficit. 0.29 percent left the question answered.

Students were also asked about their position on the Keystone pipeline, a 2,000 mile pipeline system that brings crude oil from the Canadian oil fields to the U.S. 62.80 percent of the respondents disagreed with the construction of the pipeline, while 35.45 percent of the surveyed pool supported it. 0.87 percent of the respondents did not answer the question.

When asked about the best way for the U.S. to prevent the development of nuclear weapons in nations such as Iran and North Korea, 35.74 percent of the respondents said that United Nations diplomacy was the best method. 29.40 percent preferred economic sanctions as a method to deal with these nations, while 23.34 percent selected positive incentives, such as trading food for nuclear shutdown or negotiations, as the best strategy. 9.51 percent of the respondents said U.S.-led military action was the best method. 2.02 percent of the respondents left the question unanswered.

320 of the 1,132 respondents were Seniors, 304 were Uppers, 294 were Lowers and 214 were Juniors.

347 respondents reported that they were eligible to vote, representing 30.65 percent of the surveyed pool.

VOTES was founded and is hosted by Northfield Mount Hermon School (NMH), according to Christopher Shaw, Instructor and Chair of History and Social Science, who announced the poll to the Andover student body via e-mail.

Sixty thousand students across the nation will cast their “ballots” this week and national results will be announced at NMH this Sunday, according to the NMH website.