Dear Ms. Bober,
As the presidents of the Young Democrats of Emory and the Emory Chapter of Fair Fight U, we are incredibly disturbed by a recent statement made by the president of the Emory College Republicans in an Emory Wheel article. Her assertions that we are politically biased when registering students to vote and that our registration efforts equate voter intimidation are false, baseless and incredibly harmful.
First, Young Democrats of Emory has always been committed to helping Emory students and staff, regardless of political affiliation, register to vote. The voter registration application doesn’t require any party affiliations, nor do we ask students to disclose their political leanings as we help them register. Young Democrats of Emory would never take action against helping a student or faculty member process their voter registration. Second, Fair Fight U is a nonpartisan organization that, due to 501c3 regulations, cannot hold voter registration drives. Rather, the organization dedicates itself to combating voter suppression, making voter registration information more accessible to the Emory community and encouraging students to be voter registration advocates for one another. All members of Fair Fight U who are involved in voter registration efforts do so in their personal capacity and have no official affiliation with any organization. Furthermore, because Fair Fight U is a nonpartisan organization, every executive board member has their own political beliefs which in no way factor into the objective information we share to combat voter suppression and help students cast their votes.
Additionally, we are taken aback by Emory College Republicans’ insinuation that we are doing a disservice to Emory students by providing opportunities for easy voter registration. Just a few weeks before the election, their president praised Young Democrats of Emory’s voter registration efforts on the Oct. 14th episode of “Wheel Talk,” stating, “In terms of registering to vote, we leave that up to … Young Dems. [They have] really good initiatives for that.” While we agree with her assessment of our efforts, we would also like to note that Emory College Republicans have made no visible effort to register students to vote or share information on their social media platforms.
Finally, the baseless and false allegations made by the president of Emory College Republicans have been a clear attempt to disregard the community organizing that both our groups have done over the past couple of years. While we have spent time organizing on the ground, registering voters and providing accurate, nonpartisan information to students, Emory College Republicans have spent their time supporting politicians who undermine democracy and inviting white supremacist sympathizers to campus. We fervently believe free and fair elections should not be a partisan issue and stand by our voter registration efforts. We understand the importance of access to voter registration, regardless of political party, in cultivating an equitable democracy. Any insinuation that our role in increasing access to voter registration is harmful or “not fair” implies a fundamental lack of understanding of the core mission of both of our organizations.
We encourage the Emory Wheel to not allow these baseless accusations to be made in their paper in the future. Additionally, we ask that more context be given to statements like this before future publication.
Alex Chanen (21B)
President of the Young Democrats of Emory
Alexis Greenblatt (21C)
President of Fair Fight U, Emory University Chapter