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Graceland Students Impact Local Politics
From left to right: William Morain, Ryan Nilsen, Jenna Pitstick, Anthony Ginger, Allie Weston, Richard Higdon, Kate Ytell, Erin Reynolds, Jessica Pycior, Alice Nelms, Steve Glazer, Terry Isley, Allysha Bilges, Brett Hall, and Samuel Bradley.

Graceland Students Impact Local Politics

Guest Contributor: Jenna Pitstick

Sixteen delegates were chosen to represent Bernie Sanders at the Decatur County Platform Resolution on March 12th in Leon, IA. I was one of them. The process was interesting and reminded me why every single voice matters.

Out of these sixteen delegates, fifteen were students at Graceland University and the sixteenth was Professor Steve Glazer. The delegates were chosen at the Lamoni Democratic Caucus on February 1st earlier this year. The platform that we started discussion at the March 12th resolution was also decided upon at the Lamoni Democratic Caucus.

After counting the people in attendance on the 12th, Bernie Sanders (29) was awarded two delegates to attend the District and State Democratic Conventions on April 30th and June 18th respectively, and Hillary Clinton (26) was awarded one.

When the platform began, there were seventeen resolutions on a piece of paper that were given to the delegates. After chatting about the county and state, two resolutions were destroyed and five were added. The resolutions talked about veteran affairs, education, economics, eco-friendly energy, healthcare, immigration, and other topics of interest. My personal favorite was the resolution that included Election Day as a national holiday.

These resolutions will be taken to the District Convention on April 30th and debated upon there again, where changes can also be made, and then those changes can be altered again on June 18th at the State Convention.

Also in attendance in the platform was Graceland alum Richard Higdon (son of William and Barbara Higdon whom the Higdon Administration building was named after) who had announced his campaign for State Representative late last year. Some of the Graceland students in attendance got the chance to talk to him about his campaign, we got the chance to take a picture with him. #GracelandForever.

The platform took about two hours, and we got a lot done for being such a small crowd. I probably won’t get another chance to do something like this because I’m from Illinois where we hold primaries instead of caucuses, and I’m glad that I had the opportunity to see what goes on behind the scenes.

As citizens of the United States of America, we are responsible to vote. Being part of a new generation of voters is exciting, and it would be amazing to see a large turnout of young people in November.

If you’re registered to vote at your school address, voting takes place at the Lamoni Community Center. The primary election hours are from 7AM to 9PM on November 8th this autumn. If you are not, contact your county auditor where you are registered and ask where your polling location is and inquire about an absentee ballot if you will be on campus on Election Day.

To pre-register to vote in Iowa, visit http://www.dmv.org/ia-iowa/voter-registration.php at least ten days before the general election on November 8th. You can also register on Election Day at your polling location.

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About Jenna Pitstick

Jenna Pitstick is a senior English and Film/Theatre double-major from outside Chicagoland. She's currently one of the editors of The Tower and is obsessed with memes, cats, and writing investigative journalism that makes people question what they really support and believe.

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