Superdelegate Seeks Voting Advice on YouTube
MELISSA BLOCK, host:
Now, to the ongoing Democratic presidential race. With nine primaries to go, Barack Obama and Hilary Clinton are still competing for the support of voters and superdelegates. There are still over 200 superdelegates who haven't yet committed to a candidate, and two of them are Lauren Wolfe and Awais Khaleel, president and vice president of the College Democrats of America.
To help them choose, this week, Lauren and Awais posted a video on YouTube asking people to share their opinion.
(Soundbite of video clip from YouTube)
Mr. AWAIS KHALEEL (Vice President, College Democrats of America): We really want to hear from you.
Ms. LAUREN WOLFE (President, College Democrats of America): So let us know who you think has the best plan.
Mr. KHALEEL: Friend us on Facebook or MySpace.
Ms. WOLFE: Send us a YouTube video.
Mr. KHALEEL: Or you could just let us know the old fashion way - through e-mail.
BLOCK: And we're joined now from Detroit by Lauren Wolfe. She's a law student at the University of Detroit Mercy.
Lauren, welcome to the program.
Ms. WOLFE: Hi. It's great to be here.
BLOCK: What was the inspiration behind this YouTube video? What's the idea?
Ms. WOLFE: Well, we really wanted to reach out to young people and hear what they had to say before we, you know, weighed in on the process. And I think that this is a way to reach out nationally to young people in a way that they can easily access, and then easily give us commentary back.
BLOCK: Well, how definitive will this be for you? In other words, at some point, you might want to make up your own mind about who you would pick to be the next president of the United States?
Ms. WOLFE: I don't really think it matters on what I personally think, because I'm the president of the College Democrats of America. It's my job to represent young people. We've always historically stayed out of the nomination process because the organization represents all college students working on all sorts of campaigns. So, we support everyone working for every candidate for the Democratic nomination.
That's our - been our historical platform and we actually have a neutrality statement that went into effect very early of 2007. But at this point, we've received a lot of feedback from students across the country saying, you represent me on the DNC, I want you to do this or I want you to take this stand. And so it's important for us at this point, I think, to weigh in on what young people feel.
BLOCK: I wonder if there's one message that has struck you, that really jumped out from the pile that you've received, in terms of how young people are feeling about this election.
Ms. WOLFE: What I think is interesting is kind of how different people have been tying this in or trying to, you know, make their statement stand out from others. And how we, as young people, might think what represents the youth vote might be different than other demographics and how you show support in those. For example, Ezra Dorch Feldman(ph) writes to me from the University of Chicago. He sent me an e-mail, and he said: Every night when there is a primary or a caucus, you hear that Obama's vote total jumps up when a college town results come in. His Facebook groups and YouTube groups are by far the largest of any candidate.
But then other people write in, like Amanda Coffi(ph) writes from Berkeley. She wrote me on my Facebook wall and she said that Hillary won the youth vote in California, and she will take it in the general.
BLOCK: How long is it taking you to sort through all these messages?
Ms. WOLFE: Well, I finished my last final yesterday. When I got home I started, but I had over a 1,000 e-mail messages at that point. So, we're trying to respond to every single message. We've been responding to all the Facebook messages as well, but actually on Facebook, you can't even respond to as many messages as we've been receiving because it's kind of tracked as spam. So, we have to wait 24 hours to respond now.
BLOCK: Well, Lauren Wolfe, president of the College Democrats of America, a law student and undecided superdelegate. Thanks so much for talking with us.
Ms. WOLFE: Thank you. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
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