Rachel Munoz, 17, is looking forward to casting her vote Tuesday through the "Kids Voting" program, but there's another reason the Lawrence High School junior is eagerly awaiting Election Day.
"It's gotten to the point where I'm really sick of political commercials," Munoz said. "They're just ridiculous. I think toward the end when they're panicking and trying to get as many votes as they can, they're kind of losing their composure and acting childishly."
Munoz said she was a lot more impressed with the debates among the presidential candidates.
Lawrence students in grades kindergarten through 12 will reveal how commercials, debates and discussions of the candidates have influenced them when they cast their votes Tuesday through Kids Voting. Although the votes of students under 18 won't count in the official totals, they will be tabulated and analyzed.
LHS students held their own mock election Thursday, and Bill Clinton was the clear winner with 46 percent of the vote. Ross Perot won 27 percent of the vote, and President Bush garnered 26 percent.
Like many of her classmates, Munoz plans to vote for Clinton.
"BUSH HAS been in there for four years and has shown us what he's all about, and I think we need something different," she said. As for Perot, Munoz said, "I can't see him representing us in front of other countries. I think as far as foreign relations are concerned, he'd be pathetic."
Paul Epp, a fifth-grader at Deerfield School, said the vote appears to be pretty evenly split between Bush and Clinton in his class. But like Munoz, he plans to vote for Clinton.
"I like the things he's talking about and what he'd do to change the United States," Paul said.
Emily Schulte, a seventh-grader at Central Junior High School, said students in her social studies class are overwhelmingly in support of Clinton. However, as in the national polls, Bush appears to be gaining some ground. Emily said Bush garnered just a single vote in one classroom poll but had three supporters in a later classroom vote.
Jason Walker, another seventh-grader at Central, explained why he was supporting Clinton.
"They're using our money for this $4 trillion debt. When we grow up and try to be the future leaders of the U.S.A., it could be even bigger. I think Clinton has a plan to solve our economy," Jason said.
Although Perot has talked a lot about shrinking the debt, Jason thinks Perot's vision is too narrow.
"A BUSINESSMAN will just mostly try to bring our economy up and not try to solve the other problems," Jason said.
LHS students are organizing an Election Watch, where students, parents and other members of the community will be invited to watch the Kids Voting election results. The event will be from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at the LHS cafeteria, 1901 La., where Kids Voting votes will be posted as precinct reports come in. Pizza and soft drinks will be provided.