First New Hampshire's Kid Governor Election Underway

November 6, 2018

By Alexis Soucy

This fall, the New Hampshire Institute of Politics (NHIOP) partnered with the New Hampshire Institute for Civics Education (NHICE) to bring Kid Governor, a national award-winning, statewide civics program, to New Hampshire. On November 5, the three Kid Governor finalists and their classmates participated in Kids Voting Day at the NHIOP where they watched the campaign videos and cast their votes for NHKG, as well as mock election votes for governor and Congress.

As adults prepared for the midterm elections, New Hampshire’s fifth graders ran campaigns in their classrooms and nominated candidates for the inaugural New Hampshire’s Kid Governor® (NHKG) statewide election. Nominees were required to submit a campaign video about a community issue they care about with a three-point plan designed to help other students take action on the issue.

This year’s final candidates are Ben, Evelyn, and Lola, and their platforms are hunger, poverty, and animal cruelty respectively. Their campaign videos are available for public viewing on the NHKG website.

Fifth grade classrooms throughout the state have until the end of the week to submit their votes for the NHKG election, and the winning student will be announced by the end of November. He or she will serve a year-long term as the 2019 New Hampshire’s Kid Governor after an official inauguration ceremony in January.

Once in office, New Hampshire’s Kid Governor will have the opportunity to work with NHICE and NHIOP to promote their platform, meet and speak with their constituents, maintain a blog, and participate in programs across the state.

“The hope is that Kid Governor will provide fifth graders with knowledge of current issues and the New Hampshire Constitution, and teach skills around voting, elections, campaigns and communication,” explained Martha Madsen, president of NHICE.

During Monday’s event, Valerie Sununu, First Lady of New Hampshire, explained the role of the governor at Kids Voting Day and thanked the NHKG candidates for “daring to be great.” 

Kid Governor was created by the Connecticut Democracy Center (CTDC) in 2015. The program expanded to Oregon in 2017, and New Hampshire is now the third state affiliate. Toolkits, resources, and lesson plans are tailored to each state’s government and Constitution. For more information about NHKG, visit the program’s website