New Era Colorado, a progressive youth-oriented political activist group known for its crude marketing tactics last election cycle, is now using sex to market to potential college-aged voters.
At a Colorado Springs job fair last week, New Era used its booth to hand out condoms imploring students to “do it for democracy”. The condoms were stamped with the New Era Colorado logo and the web address of a New Era voter registration website.
The organization also added to its sex-obsessed narrative with a clearly male mannequin decked in only brightly colored underwear and a t-shirt that said, “Vote, F*cker”, featured at its table. The booth, which was “manned” entirely by women in their twenties, was at the job fair positioned merely as a voter registration drive.
However, when asked what else the group focused on other than voter registration drives, booth workers confirmed that New Era was working in support of the civil unions bill currently up for debate in the Colorado General Assembly, as well as a bill that would allow teens as young as 16 to “preregister” to vote.
New Era Colorado has blurred legal lines in the past between its 501(c)3 “educational work” and its recently established 501(c)4 side designed solely for campaigning and political endorsements. Similar to earlier literature drops by New Era, nothing at the Colorado Springs event clearly marked or separated the two sides of the organization as to whether the event was run by its educational or political branch.
The funding and structure of the partner organizations also remain dubious. Campaign finance reports with the Colorado Secretary of State show that the “New Era Colorado Political Committee” registered by go-to liberal agent Julie Wells was first launched in 2006 and terminated at the end of 2010. During those four years the organization received only $7,000 in listed contributions.
The same “New Era Colorado Political Committee” was then registered again, but not until October of 2012, after Media Trackers caught the group dropping voter guides with specific political endorsements at Colorado State University. New Era went off the books yet again just two months and a mere $2,200 later, listing its termination date as 12/06/12 – the day before its first post-election campaign finance report was due.
Despite its remarkable lack of reported contributions, New Era Colorado somehow managed to operate across the state with several full-time employees and multiple paid interns. While its political contribution ability is listed as “terminated” on the committee’s campaign finance documents, the Secretary of State’s business filings show the group’s legal standing as still intact. New Era Colorado continues to hold events and solicit donations.
New Era Colorado’s display at the Colorado College job fair in Colorado Springs last week marked one more chapter in a continued trend of immaturity that has defined the young organization. As Media Trackers reported, last year New Era employees boated publicly about getting drunk on the job together before going out to register voters for President Obama’s reelection.
This post was originally featured at Media Trackers Colorado.