As the general election nears on Nov. 3, Adam Berry says he wanted to create a way for voters to learn which candidates or elected officials they identify with. On Sept. 9, the Evansville native and Republican, along with his Democrat partner Frank Short, launched politicalbank.com.
“I was wondering, ‘What other Republicans are out there that might be conservative on government spending, but may be more moderate on social issues,’ and I realized that there was no place for me to identify those candidates or elected officials,” says Berry, the founder and CEO of politicalbank.com. “The hope is that people will get the opportunity to find candidates who align with them.”
Berry’s career in politics began in 2004 after graduating from Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana, with his first job stuffing envelopes for the Marion County Republican Party. Since, Berry has helped dozens of state, local, and federal candidates establish organizational structure, raise money, or spread information by going door-to-door. In 2012, Berry joined the Pence Administration as policy director and attorney in the Governor’s Office. He considered this his dream job, but left last summer to pursue his dreams of entrepreneurship and to begin his Political Bank journey.
Approximately five percent of the 2,800 candidates — about 140 — who are running in this year’s election have their own websites. Berry says this is because political websites are expensive to establish and costly to maintain. Beginning later this month, a candidate profile on Political Bank created to raise campaign money will be $50 for a 12-month subscription. If candidates choose not to use the website to raise money, all of the features are free. A Political Bank profile always will be free for voters.
“We want to offer candidates an affordable, easy to use website,” says Berry, an Evansville native and a 1999 Reitz Memorial High School graduate. “It’s just like setting up your LinkedIn or Facebook page, there’s absolutely nothing difficult about it. It gives (candidates) the opportunity to say everything in their own words the way that an expensive website would do.”
“It’s something I hope the political novice can use as well as someone who wants to be involved with politics but just doesn’t know where to start.”
By registering with Political Bank, voters will have the ability to ask candidates questions, view a candidate’s takes on certain issues in their own words, make candidates aware of their support on a position, and contribute to a candidate they support.
Indiana has one of the lowest voter turnouts in the U.S., and the lowest in the 2014-midterm elections. Berry says he believes Political Bank is what the state needs to improve voter turnout in Indiana.
“The hope is that by giving voters more access to candidates — not just the Donald Trumps — they’ll be more engaged and inclined to cast a vote for someone they relate to that they wouldn’t have seen if it weren’t for their Political Bank profile,” says Berry.
For more information on Political Bank, visit politicalbank.com.