Our Revolution Mid-Missouri focuses on voter registration for Sanders’ campaign ahead of Missouri primary

The last of campus groups organizing for 2020 Democratic candidates is Our Revolution Mid-Missouri, which supports Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Maren Bell Jones, chair of Our Revolution Mid-Missouri, is focusing on voter registration and doing everything she can to get Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., elected president.

Jones is hoping to avoid a repeat of 2016 where she woke up the morning after the election and wondered if she had done everything she could have to get Sanders nominated in the primary.

Jones said voter registration is key in this election, especially among college students. She reiterated that Sanders lost the Missouri presidential primary in 2016 by about 1,500 votes.

“That’s like the population of one of the local high schools,” Jones said. “It’s just not very many people.”

Our Revolution Mid-Missouri has 1,742 people in its Facebook group and between 20 and 30 members who consistently show up to meetings, Jones said. Group members range from high school students to people in their 70s.

“There’s a huge population within the students who Bernie’s message really seems to resonate very strongly with,” Jones said. “I think he just has a very, very strong coalition within young voters.”

Sanders is known for his democratic socialism and policies such as “Medicare for All” and a $15 an hour minimum wage. He is coming off a narrow win in the New Hampshire primary as well as a close second in the Iowa caucus.

Our Revolution Mid-Missouri is focusing on direct voter contact, including phone and text banks and canvassing. Like other campaign organizations at MU, Our Revolution has spent weekends in Iowa canvassing, including the weekend before the Iowa caucus where they knocked on over 2,000 doors, Jones said.

Jones said this training was essential for Our Revolution members to get comfortable enough with canvassing to bring their energy back to Missouri.

Because Missouri’s primary is the week after Super Tuesday, Jones said the state will likely be neglected by campaign events as campaigns will focus on securing delegates from states like California and Texas.

“We’re probably not going to get as heavy hit with campaign events, and so it’s our job to basically be boots on the ground,” Jones said.

Above all, Jones said that the candidate who ends up winning the Democratic nomination needs to generate excitement among voters.

“Whoever goes up against Trump in 2020 in November, they have got to be able to mobilize excitement because that’s what we’re dealing with on the other side,” she said.

Students who are interested in joining Our Revolution Mid-Missouri can join the Facebook group here.

Edited by Izzy Colon | icolon@themaneater.com

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