SCOPA sponsors political-awareness fest

By Greg Rivara

The presidential election does not have to be exciting to only those familiar with the issues.

The Student Committee on Political Action is sponsoring a political-awareness festival at the East Lagoon today at 5 p.m., SCOPA Co-chairman Rene Lilly said.

The festival highlights a bus stop promoting voter awareness by the United States Student Association. The nationwide bus tour will start and will end in Washington D.C. Although the tour averages two stops per state, there will be five stops in Illinois, Lilly said.

The festival will take place at the Holmes Student Center Pow Wow room in case of rain.

Lilly said SCOPA and the USSA hope to bring educational issues to the front of the political agenda.

SCOPA Co-chairman Mike Goldstein said he hopes the festival will clarify the political issues in the local and presidential campaigns while helping students make connections between the issues and the ballot box.

Goldstein said about 20 speakers expressing a wide variety of views will address the rally, including DeKalb County Clerk candidate Maureen Josh, DeKalb County State’s Attorney candidates Michael Coghlan and Jerry Shapiro and Circuit Court Judge candidates Philip DiMarzio and Edward Diedrich. Representatives from USSA and NIU students also will speak, Lilly said.

The festival will feature food vendors, music from the local musical group June Bug Massacre and a remote broadcast from WKDI, Lilly said.

Tables also will be set up for different organizations to pass out literature and other information, Goldstein said. Organizations representing views “from the full political spectrum” were invited to maintain the non-partisan theme.

An additional Huskie Bus will be decorated and will be used to create interest and to bring students from the far west residence halls to the East Lagoon, Goldstein said.

“Everything is ready to go. Now all we need is the people,” Lilly said.

“We want to bring educational rights and economic opportunity issues to the forefront of the national agenda,” Goldstein said.