Delivering American University's news and views since 1925. | Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Student creates political action committee to support Democratic candidates

Noah Levy’s Fact PAC provides free data analysis to candidates who can’t afford it

Student creates political action committee to support Democratic candidates

Fact PAC is working to give candidates the information they need to succeed.

In response to what he sees as mounting frustration to the political climate and administration of President Donald Trump, senior Noah Levy decided to take action by starting Fact PAC, a political action committee that supports Democratic candidates across the nation.

“I would be taught throughout university that the far right is rising worldwide and it’s kind of like, what can we do?” Levy said. “Meanwhile, I’m in an environment where most of my friends, they post articles on Facebook and they get angry at the Trump administration and that’s all you can do. So I was just very inspired by kind of using my anger and putting it into action.”

Fact PAC works to provide free database and behavioral scientific consulting to Democrats nationwide who cannot afford it, Levy said. The organization, which is operated remotely online, compiles data on precincts and districts most relevant to a candidate and analyzes it for their use. Fact PAC obtains the data from that state’s Secretary of State’s website, he said.

“We show historical voter data on the aggregates of all these precincts in their district within the past few election cycles for things like the numbers on Democratic voter turnout, Republican voter turnout, the amount of registered people in both parties,” Levy said.

The group shows the concentration of voters geographically by creating heat maps, he added, calling it “a really important insight to provide to candidates.”

When it came to the process of starting a political action committee, Levy said he found that a good deal of thorough research and reading was required. However, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) makes it very easy to start a political action committee, he said.

Fact PAC’s decision to work on a volunteer basis also made the process easier. The FEC’s website has forms to start a political action committee, which can be filled out and submitted electronically. They are vetted and approved every two to three business days, according to the site.

The organization is operated by a staff of seven people, comprised of Levy, AU student Sarah Duval, four Cornell University students, and a treasurer who is not affiliated with a university.

Fact PAC currently has nine partner campaigns, one of which is Brittany Dement, a mayoral candidate in Auburn, Alabama.

“City politics is something I’ve always wanted to get my feet wet in,” Levy said. “I know how personal it can be for people and I know how much power someone who’s the mayor could have.”

Getting leaders such as Dement elected is the central goal for Levy’s organization. He encourages students to put themselves out there and fight to elect the right candidates.

“I believe in better leadership by better decision-making as opposed to a strict platform of beliefs because I think the world is constantly changing,” Levy said. “If you really want to get something you just have to be willing to send that message, or send that email.”

adonohue@theeagleonline.com


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