One minute read. Written by Asara Sawhney. A grade 6 student
The United States will vote for a president in November this year.
Who can vote?
America is a democracy. In the U.S. anyone who is an American Citizen and is over the age of 18 years has the right to vote.
Should the American people vote?
Yes they should! Voting is important because each persons choice counts. Even though it may feel as if a vote does not make a difference (since each vote is one in several thousands), it all adds up and helps towards the leader of choice being selected.
What are political parties and what do they do?
A political party is an organized group of people who have similar beliefs and opinions about how the country should be run. In America there are 2 main parties: The Democratic and The Republican parties. They argue all the time which may seem like a problem but it is not. Having 2 parties means that there are 2 points of view on every topic that is debated. If there was only one party, then the head of that party would only make all the decisions and nobody else’s opinion would matter.
How is the presidential candidate selected?
A party is made of lots of people but not all of them stand for elections. In each party they choose only a few of their best people to represent the party in the elections. Party candidates use statistics and polls to determine what the people like. In addition, they run ads on television and give speeches to let people know why they are the best person for the job. The party chooses its Presidential candidate by holding “primaries” in each state. In the primaries, people vote for “delegates” who are supporting the person they want as president. If a candidate wins a state he/she gets all the delegates of that state. In each party the person with the most number of delegates becomes the Presidential candidate of that party.
Who can become president?
- A person who was born in the US
- Has to be at least 35 years of age
- Lived in the US for at least 14 years
How is the president elected?
The President is elected not directly by the people but by a body called the ‘Electoral College’ – this is a body of electors which is made every four years to elect president and vice president. It consists of people from all the states. Each state sends some of their people (called delegates) to the Electoral College – this is based on the population of the state.
In the U.S. presidential election system, the way it works is that whichever candidate wins the most number of electoral votes wins the elections & becomes the President of USA. The popular vote does not decide (meaning the people who vote)
The Electoral College consists of 538 electors. A majority of 270 electoral votes is required to elect the President.
US elections 2020
The Presidential Candidates for the upcoming elections are:
- Joseph R Biden
- Donald Trump (current president)
- US Elections take place every 4 years.
- No person can be president for more than 8 years. (2 terms of 4 years each)
Written by Asara Sawhney (10 years old)