Let’s Democratize Democracy

Last night I joined 100 other influencers, special interest groups, presidential campaigns, and elected officials to launch Change.org’s latest project, ChangePolitics.org.

I was invited by my good friend Nick Troiano to speak as an undecided voter. The night itself was great. I was able to see old friends and make some new ones, all in the interest of making our democracy work better.

Troiano said that through this project, we would have the ability and power to democratize our own democracy.

The concept is simple. You, me, and your neighbor, submit questions which then get voted up by users which are then submitted to presidential candidates for a direct and real answer. Here in Iowa we obviously have the ability to ask questions ourselves at town halls and coffee shops. But that didn’t stop me from asking a question about the budget. I’m demanding an answer as I narrow my choices with less than three weeks to go.

Richard Dedor speaking at the ChangePolitics kickoff event in Des Moines, Iowa, on January 13, 2016. (Photo Credit: Steve Adams)

The next phase will allow the ChangePolitics team to expand to races from the presidency on down to local school board elections, providing all citizens with a tool to be informed about the candidates in a non-partisan way.

That is real and true democracy at work. A place where all ideas can flow through the marketplace for discussion and debate. In the end, it will be a win-win for candidates and the voters.

And if this caucus process has taught me anything it is that we need to be open to all ideas, all viewpoints, and work harder to make our system work better.