By Jim Sanders
While Californians were flocking to the polls this morning, the two proposed tax increases on this year's statewide ballot already had passed by a landslide in a mock election at one Sacramento-area high school.
Gov. Jerry Brown's Proposition 30 and the Proposition 38 income tax measure pushed by Molly Munger captured 82 percent and 62 percent of the vote, respectively, in voting by about 1,100 students at Florin High School in the Elk Grove school district.
President Barack Obama defeated Republican challenger Mitt Romney almost as handily as the San Francisco Giants dumped the Detroit Tigers in the World Series. Nearly nine of every 10 voters gave Obama thumbs-up.
In a relative nailbiter, students rejected Proposition 32, the proposal to ban unions from using payroll-deducted funds for political purposes. The measure died by 6 percentage points.
A single vote decided the death penalty proposition, however. Proposition 34, to ban the death penalty, received 578 yes votes and 579 rejections.
Elizabeth Graswich, district spokeswoman, said the teenagers voted recently as part of social studies classes in which they discuss current political issues and the electoral process.
"It gives them a better understanding of our government system," Graswich said.
Florin High has a very diverse student body, with Caucasians representing less than 9 percent of total enrollment. Asian students represent 37 percent; Hispanic, 34 percent; African American, 16 percent; and Filipino or Pacific Islander, 5 percent.