Opinion: Third-grader catches the pros in math gaffe

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Us grown adults tend to think of politics as, well, an adult game despite some of its participants’ antics. Every once in a while we need a reminder that there’s an entire demographic under the voting age of 18 that is watching this baffling election process very closely.

XM Satellite Radio’s POTUS 08 channel 130 got that reminder earlier today. The new subscription channel is an ultimate fix for political junkies, all-politics all-the-time. Producer Joanna Welch was opening the mail this morning and came upon a unique letter that had some spiling errers but made a very valid point.

It was from Sophia McCrimmen, who turns out to be 8 years old and an avid politics and POTUS fan who lives in Mechanicsville, VA. ‘I love lisning to your shows!’ she wrote. ‘I love politics so much! I just have one problem, you are underestimating the number of days until the election! You are forgeting that 2008 is a leap year!...Plese add one day too your total to acount for leap day. Keep up the good work.

‘P.S. Can you mabie read this on the radio? That would be super cool!!!!


‘P.P.S. If you have time. I don’t want to mess you up.’

You can imagine how little time it took for Welch to check the calendar. Guess what? Sophia was right. The pros had been counting the days to the ’08 election incorrectly. It didn’t take long to get Sophia on the phone. You can hear her three-minute on-air interview with POTUS’s host of ‘1600' Rebecca Roberts by clicking here.

Sophia really knows her stuff. She favors Barack Obama because of his Iraq war stance and he also likes SpongeBob SquarePants. She thinks people ought to be able to vote at any age if they are well-informed about politics.

Given that so many so-called adult Americans don’t even bother to vote, you know, she’s got a real good point there. So make a note of that name: Sophia McCrimmen. And watch for it on a ballot near you in, oh, say, about 30 years or so.

--Andrew Malcolm