Citizens Clean Elections Commission (CCEC) is spearheading a first time, free public conference titled, We The Voters: Our Impact on 2020, where voters can immerse themselves in a day of instruction in elections and civics. The state’s leading political and elections experts have agreed to assemble for this inaugural, non-partisan 8-hour event where the general public can customize their educational experience. The gathering is timely and relevant: Arizona voters turned out in historic numbers in the 2018 mid-term elections—including a spike in younger voters age 18-24—and the 2020 voter turnout projections are expected to break records.
Just in time for the 2020 Elections, this unprecedented conference on Saturday, Oct. 26 delivers all of the information that new or experienced voters need to understand about the state’s elections system. One panel provides the opportunity to ask the Arizona Republican, Democratic and Libertarian party chairs: Kelli Ward, Felecia Rotellini and Howard Blitz, respectively, about party values via a panel discussion moderated by KJZZ’s political reporter Lauren Gilger.
“We The Voters Conference is a unifying gathering for all eligible voters and the word ‘we’ is deliberate because our democratic system was designed to be all-inclusive and while last year voter participation rates boded well in Arizona events like this support continued momentum,” said Citizens Clean Elections Commissioner and former State Elections Director, Amy Chan “Attending this first-of-its-kind event is an easy first step for people who have not participated in elections historically and for seasoned voters alike.”
The main sessions repeat in the afternoon so that people can conveniently attend and select their preferred breakout sessions. The main sessions cover the Presidential Preference Election, the Primary and the General Election. The breakout sessions are varied and interesting. One session teaches people techniques to discern between facts and falsities on social media, another trains people how to talk about politics with people who hold opposing views and another provides insights into how ballots are kept safe all the way through tallying, among many others. There are many workshops to choose from, download the full program at We The Voters Conference.
In addition to the workshops and the unique panel with all of the chairs from the respective political parties, the We The Voters Conference featured keynote speaker is Mi-Ai Parrish. Ms. Parrish is Sue Clark-Johnson Professor in Media Innovation and Leadership at the ASU, Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication. As the former president and publisher of USA TODAY NETWORK Arizona, The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com, she will provide insight into how voters are impacted by the news media in the political process.
“We designed this innovative conference to highlight the importance of elections and equip voters to feel both educated and empowered about their role in democracy,” said Citizens Clean Elections Commission, Voter Education Director, Gina Roberts. “Our goal is for attendees to leave the event having heard from a line-up of amazing speakers and feeling inspired to participate.”
The conference, scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 26, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Phoenix Convention Center North Building, 100 N 3rd St, Phoenix, AZ 85004 is open for registration now, read all of the details at www.azcleanelections.gov/we-the-voters.