The term “clean election” isn’t as prevalent as it should be these days. In fact, many students don’t know what it really means.
This is where Democracy Matters comes in.
Democracy Matters is a nationwide campus-based project that aims to teach students about the importance of clean elections. It focuses on money in politics in order to point out what it thinks is a very critical flaw in our democratic system.
The project offers paid internships for college students and trains young people to be effective grassroots organizers and advocates.
“Clean elections are elections that support public financing of elections, rather than have one large company pay for the majority of an election campaign,” Bradley campus Democracy Matters coordinator Nicki Hanson said. “When that happens, the big company tends to get the vote. In clean elections, you still get the money but without all of the big spending.”
Bradley’s chapter of Democracy Matters was created last semester.
To get more students involved and aware of the project, Democracy Matters will host a “Week of Action” from Monday to Thursday, full of activities that are not only fun, but will teach students about the significance of clean elections.
The film “Thank You for Smoking” will be shown at 7:30 p.m. Monday in Baker B51. Students will have the opportunity to sign the Democracy Matters petition, as well as sign up for the chapter. The club hopes for at least 15 attendees, 10 signatures and two new members.
The group will have a parade from noon to 1 p.m. Tuesday on campus. It hopes to pass out 40 fliers and get at least three new members.
There will be an Easter egg hunt from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday in the Baker Quad. The group’s goal is to have 15 participants, as well as two new members.
“Not only will the eggs contain a treat, but they will also have a fact about clean elections,” Hanson said. “There will be a total of 100 eggs with 20 different facts.”
If it rains, the hunt will be moved to the Michel Student Center.
And finally, Democracy Matters will host a TV series marathon from 4:30 p.m. until 11 p.m. Thursday in Neumiller Hall. Five trivia questions will be asked in between shows, and candy will be given out for prizes. The group said it hopes for 30 attendees and at least six new members.
“We hope having fun activities will help students to get involved,” Hanson said. “Clean elections are very important, and most people don’t even know what clean elections are.”