2017 Mayoral Election Simulation: Bill de Blasio vs. Nicole Malliotakis
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By Daniela Zavlun and Nataniela Zavlun, staff writer
Representing important political figures, more than a dozen seniors face off in the 2017 mayoral election simulation. This year’s candidates are Bill de Blasio (Shahidul Abedin), Nicole Malliotakis (Melissa King), Scott Stringer, Michael Faulkner, Letitia James, J.C. Polacco, Melinda Katz, William Kregler, Carlina Rivera, Jimmy McMillan, Liz Crowley, and Robert Holden.
The two ultimate rivals in the race for mayor are Democrat Bill de Blasio and Republican Nicole Malliotakis, each with different approaches to major issues such as policing, housing, healthcare, and education. Once in office, de Blasio hopes to upgrade NYC security by having police officers wear body cameras, reduce the number of homeless people in our city by adding more shelters, and better the public school education system by using funds to expand universal pre-k.
However, Nicole Malliotakis focuses on improving the quality of education at public schools by directing more funds towards the actual classrooms rather than central administrations. Moreover, she strongly advocates for the protection of undocumented immigrants and more affordable housing for homeless people in order to address the problem of homelessness with a more permanent solution. Politics aside, each candidate representative also aims to gain more support by hosting bake sales to raise money for their campaign and visiting classrooms around the school.
Senior Shahidul Abedin remarks on his experience playing Bill de Blasio “You have to be prepared to answer any and all questions to the persona of the person you are representing…it honestly is a great experience being part of such a rigorous political process.”
Melissa King, who plays Nicole Malliotakis, added “The experience of playing such an important role in the election simulation is challenging at times, but overall I’m enjoying the experience… I have also learned so much more about the political process in these past weeks than I ever could have imagined. It is pretty cool that I have to win over my peers through ads, class visits, bake sales, and through the media.”
While having a front-row seat in the election process is fun, it also makes the student body more aware of the problems that face our city and allows them to form and voice their own opinions about our government.
“I think the election simulation is great for the school. It’s a great way to teach people about modern day politics and what’s happening around the world, especially around our country” commented Jason Lu, freshman.
Many sophomores, juniors and seniors have pointed out that this election is noticeably calmer than the previous year’s. While none can match unprecedented nature of last year’s election, this election is still equally as important, despite being on a smaller scale than the presidential election. As the election gets more intense, it becomes increasingly difficult to predict which candidate will be victorious in winning over the majority of the student body. Melissa speaks to this when she says “It’s hard to tell now who will win the election, but I believe that all of the candidates work hard because believe it or not this is a difficult task. I think the candidate who reaches out the most to the voters will win the election.” Voters are still watching closely to root for their favorite candidates and, in the words of Shahidul Abedin, help NYC “grow to a better future and a better tomorrow.”