FESTIVAL: Organizer accolades

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In response to the recent Press article about the Civic Action Festival and the question it posed about the actual non-partisan nature of the event, I am compelled to write. I have the privilege to know personally the event organizer, Jessica Mahuron.

She was very deservedly recognized by the Kootenai County Democratic Central Committee as the 2018 winner of its Rising Star Award. While she was active for a while as a KCDCC member, she moved in other directions to live out her democratic (small d) values.

The same organizing talent that she is displaying as organizer of the Civic Action Festival, she demonstrated as the Kootenai County coordinator of the successful Medicaid expansion petition drive. I know that, if she said she contacted the Kootenai County Republican Central Committee and candidates about the festival, she did. That they overlooked or ignored the invitation is not the fault of the organizer.

When she contacted the Kootenai County Democrats, we took it upon ourselves to further publicize the event to our own statewide candidates. Both our local and our statewide candidates made their own decisions about whether to attend or not, given their other campaign commitments. Political engagement is a legitimate and essential part of our democratic process and civic life. I appreciate that the event is open to candidates. It is a wonderful, unexpected opportunity for candidates of all stripes to talk individually to voters.

I will be there to help register new voters. I hope you will be there, too.

PAULA NEILS

KCDCC LD2 Chair

Hauser

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