This lesson uses the example of the 2008 contested Senate election between Al Franken and Norm Coleman in Minnesota, to discuss contested elections, counting votes, and recount laws. Looks at recount laws in your own state.
This lesson starts with a political cartoon, then leads into discussion about the Electoral College and electing the U.S. President.
This lesson provides students with a brief overview of the historical evolution and expansion of voting rights in the United States. Students will discuss examples of previous “voting qualifications” used by states in the past to deny minorities the right to vote. They will reflect on why the right to vote is important, and appreciate the outcomes of constitutional amendments, Supreme Court decisions, and the Voting Rights Act in the expansion of this right.
In this lesson, students will discuss what qualifications are necessary to vote. The activity presents a series of potential voters for a student council election, and asks that students either allow or prohibit each person from voting. After reflecting on their justifications, they will learn that states and the federal government have very few restrictions on voting. The instructor might then lead a discussion on the importance of voting to the democratic process.