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From Pub to Politics: A Super PAC to Promote Bipartisanship


Four weeks before Election Day, don’t expect to hear anything about the similarities between Romney and Obama. The focus is on party differences—opposing viewpoints, plans, solutions, and priorities. Amid all this focus on division, two George Washington University seniors of opposing political affiliations are working to emphasize compromise in politics.
Winslow Marshall and Daniel Bassali were inspired by their own discussions at the local university pub, where the two were able to find common ground over the pressing, nationwide issue of our nation’s rising debt. They asked themselves: Why can’t our Congressmen do the same?
They decided to start their own Super PAC—Slam Dunks, Fireworks, and Eagles (SFE)—encouraging politicians to work for bipartisanship. The end goal is to raise money to host an event where politicians of all parties can come together, relax with their beer of choice, and start real discussion about reducing the deficit.
To reach a solution, Marshall believes that members of Congress need to step outside their party lines and “talk with each other person to person, rather than politician to politician.”
The Super PAC saw a lot of media buzz when it was first created two months ago, mostly because of its clever name and unique goal to raise “beer money.” Since then, they have raised about $1,000 through campus fundraisers and personal donations. But it's not going toward beer. For now, Marshall and Bassali are focusing on raising awareness about bipartisanship and informing others about the importance of deficit reduction.
Their most recent event featured a guest speaker from the grassroots bipartisan movement No Labels and on October 23, the two will head to Houston, Texas to give a speech at a bipartisanship event co-hosted by the Lake Clear Tea Party and a local Democratic candidate. They also plan to inform their fellow college students through school newspapers which politicians support bipartisanship and have responded to their outreach and events.
SFE’s biggest supporters are university students, but this isn’t because of their common interest in beer. Marshall believes students understand and support their cause because of the worry and concern about the future impact of the deficit.
“In general, politicians seem to be making decisions that impact the present without much regard for the implications of those decisions on the future," he said. "If our debt continues to grow, we college students and our children are going to inherit that debt and be put in a really tough position.”
Marshall and Bassali probably won’t vote for the same candidate in November’s election, but they have made an effort to put their differences aside for the common goal of progress. We should expect the same commitment from our elected politicians. Bipartisanship could be the solution, not only for deficit reduction, but other issues that create political gridlock and thwart our nation's progress. Let’s make compromise popular.
Visit here to donate or show support for Slam Dunks, Fireworks, and Eagles.
Image (cc) flickr user adriaan de man\n
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Center for American Progress Action Fund

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