Mission for Arizona: Activism on campus
Mission for Arizona, “A People-Powered Campaign,” is paid for by the Arizona Democratic party. The goal is to get volunteer canvassers to help University of Arizona students register to vote. This fall, the group aimed to get students register in time to vote for Arizona’s Nov. 8 midterm election.
Carter Everly, a Mission for Arizona volunteer and former UA student, has volunteered for Mission for Arizona since the beginning of the fall semester. When Everly saw the group tabling on campus last semester, he said he knew he wanted to volunteer this fall. He has always wanted to be more involved with politics.
“I thought I could make a difference instead of just using my one vote and make a bigger impact,” he said.
In his eyes, being a canvasser is work that matters, and can end up making a difference.
Everly and other volunteers go through a one-day training from Mission for Arizona leaders to learn how to give a pitch. When being stopped by a canvasser, they will ask if they are registered to vote. Depending on the response, the canvasser gives a different pitch.
Some students who are at the UA from out-of-state do not know that they do not need to be an Arizona resident to vote in the state. But as long as one has an Arizona address, they can vote.
In the beginning of the semester when more students were getting registered to vote, Mission for Arizona stationed students in specific places around the university such as in front of the libraries or the Richard A. Harvill Building. Everly said if they were not stationed, volunteers would walk around the campus to collect voter registrations.
Arizona is a purple state, also known as a swing state, meaning that the two major political parties, Republican and Democrat, have almost equal support amongst voters in Arizona. Mission for Arizona is in support of the Democratic party, and Everly said their goal now is to get voters to know more about Mark Kelly and Katie Hobbs in hopes that Arizona will become a blue state in this midterm election.
“Your vote is going to matter more here,” Everly will tell students when he is canvassing, “because of Arizona being a swing state.”
Everly said he expects Mission for Arizona canvasser volunteers will be back on campus for other upcoming elections, such as the presidential one. As for now, the last day to register to vote for the midterms was Oct. 11. Everly plans to work for Mission for Arizona until November to keep informing voters on Kelly and Hobbs.
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