COPA to exhibit electoral college documentary

Club sponsors film, exposes flaws in voting systems

By Benjamin Bassham, Staff Writer

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The film “Electoral Dysfunction” will be shown in the Library and Learning Resource Center by the fireplace today, from 4 to 6 p.m.

It will be the second film of the Community Organizing and Political Action (COPA) club’s Fall Film Forum.

Political science assistant professor Vanna Gonzales said, “The film’s a national level look at the 2012 presidential campaign.”

The film will cover various facets of the electoral process like how political primaries work, voter ID laws, what the Electoral College actually is and some of the failures of the system.

The documentary follows former Daily Show correspondent Maurice Alberto “Mo” Rocca.

The film’s promotional material says, “After discovering that the right to vote is missing from the (U.S.) Constitution, political humorist Mo Rocca sets out on a road trip to see how voting works — and doesn’t work — in America.”

The film is “a humorous and nonpartisan look at voting in America.”

The narrative wanders through a haze of inconsistent and sometimes insane voting laws, dubious political maneuvering and counterintuitive ballot designs.

The film addresses the question of why individuals technically do not have the right to vote.

A half-hour panel will follow the showing, where local political experts will talk about how it boils down in local politics.

Dr. Gonzales said, “It brings it down to our local, Contra Costa, level.”

COPA Vice President Xenia Rivera said, “Instead of just being a film, there is people there who are maybe a little larger than life.”

The speakers will include Chuck Carpenter, the immediate past chair for the Democratic Party of Contra Costa County, Contra Costa County Republican Party  Chairperson Rohilt Joy, Rita Xavier of the West Contra Costa County League of Women Voters and others.

Politics are important but it is always hard to present the issues that regular people can digest, COPA President Wali Khan said. 

“I think our political system is mired in moneyed interests. Our two-party system disadvantages any third party,” Khan said.

After the panel, Café Soleil will cater a small reception for COPA, Business and Pre-Law club members to discuss joint activities.

The COPA club is making a push to get more people involved in the process that rules their lives. There will be a push to get attendees interested in being paid poll workers.

If 25 people commit to being poll workers, then free training will be provided.

For more information, contact  Gonzales at vgonzales@contracosta.edu.

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