Conestoga Stories Through Students' Eyes

The Prowl

Conestoga Stories Through Students' Eyes

The Prowl

Conestoga Stories Through Students' Eyes

The Prowl

2024 Presidential Election

While it is only February, the 2024 Presidential Campaign has already begun. Most high school students are not old enough to vote. But, it is still important to understand elections so you are prepared for when you do register to vote. However, elections can be very intimidating. Fortunately, they do not have to be. Here is your simplified guide to the 2024 road to the Oval Office.

First, let’s take a look at the two main parties. The Democrats lean left and are often called liberals. Republicans lean right and are commonly known as conservatives. Each party nominates a presidential candidate by holding a series of state primaries and caucuses. The process varies from state to state, but many will hold their primaries on March 5th. President Joe Biden is expected to secure the Democratic Party nomination. Former President Donald Trump has won the first two state contests and is set up to be the Republican Party nominee. Several independent candidates are also running, but the only independent to ever be elected in our nation’s history was George Washington. They usually do not carry any weight in the outcome of elections.

On January 15th, the Republicans kicked off election season with the first caucus in Iowa. Donald Trump won by a large margin of 56,260 (51%) votes. Ron DeSantis, who has since dropped out of the race, followed with 23,420 (21.2%). Nikki Haley was next with 21,085 (19.1%). The first Presidential Primary Election gave us both a Democratic and Republican winner. Joe Biden secured 79,661 (64.8%) of votes, while Donald Trump beat out his competition for 176,385 (54.4%) votes. Expect more primaries to occur in the upcoming weeks.

During the primary elections, voters choose their preferred candidate anonymously by casting ballots. The state where the primary is held takes the results of the vote into account to award delegates to the winners. Several states choose to hold caucuses in the months leading up to a presidential election. Caucuses are meetings run by political parties. Some caucuses choose candidates by secret ballot. Others require participants to divide themselves into groups based on who they support. Each candidate’s group debates and delivers speeches to sway voters. In the end, the number of delegates given to each candidate is based on the number of caucus votes they received. Primaries and caucuses give voters and the candidates a good idea of who is favored to win the actual election.

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The candidates will compete to win electoral college votes during the election. Each state is allotted a number of electoral college votes based on its population. For example, California has a population of roughly 39.24 million people and gets 54 votes. Delaware has around 1 million people and gets 3 votes. To win, a candidate will have to get 270 or more votes out of 538. Voters decide state-level contests rather than national ones. This means a candidate can win the most votes nationally, but still be defeated by the electoral college. All but two states, Nebraska and Maine, have a winner-takes-all rule, so the candidate who wins the popular votes in that state gets all of the electoral college votes. Most states lean heavily towards one party or the other, so candidates focus their campaign on the “battleground states,” where either could win.
While the focus is on the presidency, voters also will be choosing new members of Congress and the House of Representatives seats. All 435 seats in the House of Representatives are up for election, and 33 Senate seats are on the ballot too. Currently, Republicans control the House and Democrats are in charge of the Senate. It is important to the president to have their party controlling the Senate and House. This is because to pass laws that follow their beliefs and fit their agenda, they need the members who share their party’s beliefs.

Track the 2024 Presidential Campaign:

2024 Presidential Campaign Candidates:

Register to Vote in Nebraska:

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About the Contributor
Layla F
Layla F, Staff Writer
Layla F is a freshman at Conestoga. She is involved in softball, the dance team, track, speech, FBLA, and mock trial. This is her first year in journalism. In her free time, Layla enjoys cooking, playing with her dogs, and hanging out with friends. She is excited to grow her writing skills while writing for The Prowl this year!

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