Recent Colorado College graduates who want to raise political awareness among young people in Iowa and elsewhere are paddling canoes from Lake Itaska, Minnesota, to New Orleans. Doug Vilsack, the son of Iowa’s Governor, is among the 17 paddlers who will hold a rally late this afternoon (Friday) in Davenport. Todd Mercural is spokesman for the group, which hopes to fight voter apathy among young people. Mercural says young people don’t trust politicians because politicians don’t tend to listen to issues that are important to the youth. He says he’s learned politicians may not listen to the young because young people don’t bother to vote. He says they’re trying to break that cycle, in part, with this long canoe trip through the nation’s midsection. The trip began in Minnesota in early June. The group passed through Dubuque earlier this week. They’ll arrive in Burlington by Tuesday and hope to be in New Orleans by the 21st of August. Mercural says he hopes young people will hear their message and recognize the importance of the right to vote. Mercural says the group plans to hold a rally at Davenport’s LeClaire Park on the riverfront at 5 PM where young people will be encouraged to register and to vote. For more on the trip, see the website “www.paddle4president.org”.
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