Posted by Peter Jarka-sellers on July 08, 2016
This coming fall I will start at Macalester College where I intend to study politics and public policy, moving to St Paul, Minnesota from my hometown of Philadelphia. I am just completing a gap-year which I spent expanding my work with Citizens’ Climate Lobby of which I have been a member for nearly three years. With Citizens’ Climate Lobby, I worked directly with Congress lobbying for Carbon Fee and Dividend (CF&D), a revenue neutral carbon pricing system, as well as working directly with local government to generate support for CF&D. My gap-year also consisted of volunteering with the Philadelphia chapter of the DraftBiden superPAC in the fall, and in the spring volunteering on Joe Sestak’s Senate campaign and Dan Muroff’s congressional campaign in Pennsylvania’s 2nd district. Though my policy interests are very broad, my two areas of special policy interest are climate change mitigation policy, and international relations and defense policy.
I am delighted to be interning at FairVote this summer. FairVote is comprised of good, dedicated people, is a strong non-partisan voice for important reform, and is a provider of important research on the effects of electoral structure. I have seen firsthand how dysfunctional Congress can be, and how this gridlock prevents the inaction of meaningful policy that so many are in such great need of. FairVote’s reforms will do much to combat this problem so that government can better enable people to live secure, healthy, and productive lives, can ensure equal rights, can conduct a forceful yet diplomatically oriented foreign policy, and can respond meaningfully to the threat of climate change.
At FairVote, my work is in the Research Department as well as with the organization’s Executive Director. I have been working primarily on the effects of the top-two primary system used in California and Washington state, including collecting and analyzing data, and writing about the findings.
Beyond of my political interests which are prevalent outside of my academic and work lives, I am a distance runner and a big soccer fan supporting my hometown team the Philadelphia Union, Chelsea in England, AS Roma in Italy, and the Austrian and American national teams. I enjoy both creating and consuming food, and am an avid collector of foreign currency.