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November 04, 2008

Day in the Life of a Washington DC School on Election Day

Img_3511 Day in the Life of a Washington DC School on Election Day

By Madison Hartke-Weber

A few blocks from the Capitol Building where Senators Obama and McCain both have their Senate offices is Stuart-Hobson Middle School, the school which I currently attend. Like many public school buildings in DC, Stuart-Hobson is a polling place for both local and national elections. There is always a lot going on at the school, but today it was particularly busy.

When the polls there opened, there were about one hundred voters in line. Some students were
helping out at a bake sale that our school does every election day. This year,
by 2:00 pm, we had already raised $1,200 dollars for our school!

I interviewed six voters, one poll worker, one student at Stuart-Hobson, and the school librarian. Four people voted for Obama, one was for McCain, one was still undecided as she waited in line, and one refused to say who he was voting for.

It is expected that Senator Obama will win by a large margin here.

I spoke with Neil Scott, the Precinct Captain, about the turnout of this election compared to 2004. I was very surprised when he told me that the highest turnout was actually in 2004, because it seemed very crowded to me.
However, he did say that the people coming to vote were “very jovial.”

Voting was not the only thing happening at Stuart-Hobson. My class also went on a field trip to the Newseum, a museum about news and the reporters who cover the news. It includes several hands-on activities, including two games where you can be a reporter or a photographer, as well as some of the earliest
newspapers ever printed. One of them was from the year 1455! All of the students enjoyed this trip a lot, especially looking at the front pages of newspapers from around the country and the world, which all featured headlines about today’s election. It should be interesting to see all the headlines tomorrow!

PHOTO: Maddie Hartke-Weber interviews voters in line to vote at a polling place in Washington, D.C. on November 4, 2008. (Photo courtesy Maddie Hartke-Weber)


Ebony and BJ

We live in Washington DC and on Election day we saw long lines of people waiting to vote. We also saw people dancing in the streets when they found out Obama won. Most people were very happy. Some people were crying. I also heard fireworks.

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