C-SPAN carries election to youth

Wesley Meno decided to cut short his Halo game Thursday to check out the red, white and blue bus parked on Augusta State University's campus.


The ASU sophomore and dozens of others stepped aboard C-SPAN's Campaign 2008 Bus to weigh in on this year's presidential election.

"People complain about what the president's done, and they say 'I wish I could do something,' " Mr. Meno said. "They should have done something. They could have voted."

Members of the Young Democrats of ASU and Comcast brought C-SPAN to ASU and Paine College on Thursday.

C-SPAN, Cable-Satellite Public Affairs Network, offers nonstop airing of government proceedings and public affairs programming.

The Campaign 2008 Bus stopped at the universities to inform students about the channel's mission and the political process, said Heath Neiderer, marketing supervisor for C-SPAN. Close to 200 students, between the two schools, boarded the bus and showed their enthusiasm for this year's election, he said.

"It's exciting, because they're so involved and aware of the issues," Mr. Neiderer said. "We go to middle schools and high schools and they know the top tier candidates. We go to universities and they know all about it. It's refreshing."

ASU freshman Joppa Smoot said because this year's election is the first he can vote in, C-SPAN'S nonbiased coverage will help him make the best decision.

"I really want to be informed before I vote," Mr. Smoot said. "People are so far removed from voting, so I appreciate them taking the time out to teach us about the election."

Once students boarded the bus equipped with cameras, production equipment and an interview set, they viewed a 5-minute video about C-SPAN's political coverage, Mr. Neiderer said. Two C-SPAN Campaign 2008 buses will tour the country until November's vote.

Joey Traina, a member of Young Democrats of ASU, said he hopes the information offered by C-SPAN's visit would go to good use come election time.

"We brought election coverage to ASU," Mr. Traina said. "I hope the youth will really pick it up and really get out there."

Reach Stephanie Toone at (706) 823-3215 or stephanie.toone@augustachronicle.com.