Welcome to the Presidential Election 2008 Webquest!


Election Vocabulary

  1. Print out the Election Vocabulary List.  Keep this page in your Research Folder. 
  2. Next, do the flash card and matching activities.

Keep your election vocabulary lists in your notebook or folder for future reference.

Did you know that government is all around us and that decisions made by government affect us? Often in cities, states and countries, groups of people who share the same political opinions want their government to make decisions in a certain way. Many times the people who hold opinions in common form a group that elects leaders who best promote those ideas. These groups are called political parties.  Political parties hold conventions to publicize their party’s platform and choose candidates. The political parties build an “idea platform’ for their conventions.  The platform of ideas is the stand that the parties take on certain issues.*


Political Parties

A political party is a group of voters organized to support certain public policies. The aim of a political party is to elect officials who will try to carry out the party's policies.

A political party offers candidates for public office. It sets out positions on issues that may range from war and taxes to how children should be educated. When people in a democracy disagree about what the government should do, voters express their opinions by voting for the candidates that most closely reflect their views. Political parties provide a way for voters to easily identify a candidate's positions.

Political parties may be large or small, national or local. Large political parties generally have millions of members and supporters. In democratic election campaigns, parties compete freely for votes. Such competition is one of the hallmarks of democracy.**

The political parties encourage voters to support their candidates through many methods such as sponsoring debates, advertising, fundraising, letter or e-mail writing campaigns, slogans, making speeches and hosting big meetings called conventions.  After that, for the eight to 10 weeks between the Convention and Election Day, the Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates “go to the people.”  That is, the ELECTION CAMPAIGN STARTS!

Voting is the basis of the election.  If the majority of people do not get out and vote, then the person elected will not truly reflect our citizens decisions.  It requires conscientious citizens that care about their country and are willing to take the time to research the candidates and use their knowledge to pick the candidate which best represents what they believe.  Can you accept this daunting challenge?  Do you have the determination to persevere and review information to make a decision about who best to lead this great nation of ours to success?  We need YOU to join the Policy Research Team and help voters make sense of this information so that they too can make the right decision. 

The Nation thanks you for accepting this challenge and becoming part of the Policy Research Team.  Without you, voters everywhere make not get the necessary information to make an informed decision about who best to lead this great nation.  We must now ask that you take your challenge and research each candidate on important issues to you and report back with your findings.  It is going to require hard work on your part because you must analyze the candidate's decision, think about your own views and make a determination on which candidate is best suited to fit YOUR needs.

Now, look at head for the details on your important mission!


The Task

Inside the Issues

How does your candidate stand on the issues? Using the links  below in resources to investigate how your candidate stands on the following issues:

  • Education

  • Environment

  • Health Care

  • Iraq

  • Jobs & the Economy

  • Terrorism and National Security

As you review these policies, fill out your Policy Research Forms so that you can share your information with the rest of the Policy Research Team.  This form will be a vital part of your research project so take your time and think about what you are reading.  As you read, remember to utilize your essential reading skills:  Inference (I think that.....), Evaluation (What do you think?), Compare/Contrast, and Conclusion (Putting the Information Together).





Based on your information obtained through your Policy Research, who would you cast your ballot for?  Why?

Fill out your Decision 2008 Presidential Ballot! 

Decision 2008 Presidential Ballot


Click here to print out your "I VOTED" badge!

Congratulations on making an informed decision.  You did the hard work and conducted the research and now when you're asked a question about which candidate you hope to win the White House, you can say, "After serious and considerate research, this is my candidate who shares my beliefs and what decisions can help our country to succeed."




REFLECT....after the election

Can you answer the essential question now? Why is it so important for people to exercise their right to vote????

Now that you have completed all of your tasks, do you have the courage to possibly be President some day?  Can you take your final challenge and answer honestly the final two questions?
  1. Take those 2 important issues to your candidate from your previous research.  What would you, as President, do about these issues?
  2. Why should America vote for you?  What makes you the better candidate?

To complete your final assignment, go to the Evaluation sheet and answer each of the questions so that your students can decide if they will vote for you some day!

Congratulations on a job well done!!!

Thank you for completing Mrs. Bishop's Web Quest!