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College Democrats making presence felt at FAMU

By Kalen Johnson | Staff Reporter
On September 13, 2018

With Andrew Gillum’s historic victory in last month’s Democratic primary, there is no greater time for the FAMU College Democrats to be re-chartered on the campus of Florida A&M University.

Taylar Hall, president and senior political science student, took to twitter to announce the resurgence of the organization after its absence since 2016.

When asked about the process of re-chartering the organization, Hall said, “The process was easier than I expected. There are a lot of students on FAMU’s campus that desire to be politically involved. Once I got students to help me, everything was easier.”

College Democrats at FAMU aims to establish a network of student Democrats, in addition to those whose views align similarly to the mission of the party. The organization’s main goal is to create a political presence on FAMU’s campus.

“In the state we’re in, College Democrats being on FAMU’s campus, now is very important. They are getting students registered to vote and they’re informing students of what will be on the ballads in November,” said Devin Harrison, a former SGA president and senior public relations student minoring in political science.

Voter registration is at the top of the organization’s list of priorities and it is working hard to ensure that students are registered to vote in Leon County. Often, students that aren’t native to Tallahassee are unable to vote because they’re registered in their hometown.

“We want to inspire students to take charge of their future and be politically engaged,” said Hall.

In addition to voter registration drives, College Democrats will be hosting seminars to inform students of the many constitutional amendments that will be on the ballot in the midterm elections. College Democrats plan to leave no one out of the loop, as these seminars will fully engage attendees with the proper political information to make the appropriate voting decision.

Marrissa McFarlane, a junior criminal justice major, said, “It is important that the College Democrats  plan to inform students on what will be on the ballot. We need to know about amendments like the “Florida Restoration Amendment”, which automatically restores voting rights to felons except those convicted of murder or a felony sexual offense, upon completion of their sentences, including prison, parole, and probation.”

The world just witnessed Gillum, a FAMU grad and the mayor of Tallahassee, become the first African-American to win a major party nomination for governor in Florida. Hall is confident that communication will occur between the organization and Gillum’s camp in hopes of having additional campaigning on FAMU’s campus.

The last time Florida chose a Democrat as a governor was in 1994, when Lawton Chiles was re-elected. The College Democrats recognize that young voters in Florida have never known their state to have a Democratic governor. With their efforts, they plan to change that.

“Another primary focus is to make sure Democrats are elected. For 20 years, Florida has had a Republican governor. Therefore, we are trying to do everything we can to make sure students vote in the democrats when they go to the polls,” said Hall.

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