Current Issues

The optional ballot question for the 2023 mock election concerns climate change and energy resources. This is not only one of the pressing issues of our time but has also been a focus of political debate regarding state policies. Teachers should also note that the NJ Student Learning Standards now place a greater emphasis on the issue of climate change, and the ballot question is one way to help address those standards. Participation in the issue question is optional, but we hope teachers and students will carefully consider it in addition to assessing the merits of the candidates for the New Jersey Legislature.

Issue questions are included in the mock election to familiarize students with the idea that as adults they will vote on public questions as well as candidates. We will continue to offer links to the issues from recent elections for teachers who may be looking for sample issue questions for the current class of students. The information regarding ranked-preference voting in primaries is included to facilitate class discussions on possible means to address the current partisan environment. Since voting during a pandemic was an issue of historical significance, we have included information regarding voting procedures in New Jersey so that students can participate in the actual election by encouraging parents and other adults to cast their vote in a safe manner of their choosing. It is also hoped that high school students eligible to vote will embrace this important civic responsibility.