A group of 18-year-olds freshly graduated from Tampa Preparatory School are running their own super PAC.
Young Americans for Rational Politics is a super PAC being run by chairman/federal treasurer Alex Iannacio, vice chair Alex Hitchcock and assistant treasurer Wesley Merritt. The Tampa Bay Times reports Iannacio filed the papers necessary to form the political action committee on the day he became eligible — April 14, 2012 or his 18th birthday.
"Remember that last time you wanted me to come play Monopoly and I couldn't?" Iannacio asked Merritt at a recent
Young Americans for Rational Politics meeting. "It's because I was on the phone with the FEC!"
The Times reports Iannacio downloaded a template for a cover letter, a five-page form to fill out, and used his dad as their lawyer for assistance. Merritt pledged to put in $200 from graduation money and Hitchcock planned to match that.
Iannacio has been involved in politics before -- albeit as a class representative at Tampa Prep.
Super PACs are political action committees able to raise and spend unlimited amounts of money without strict disclosure rules to follow. In the 2012 election, they've been outspending actual candidates' campaigns for advertising.
Typically, these groups are run by seasoned political operatives. However, this group of teenagers is not the first group of young people to start their own super PAC.
Utes for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow was started by Joshua Mines, an 18-year-old who has never voted in an election before. Mines was following the lead of comedian Stephen Colbert.
After Colbert challenged college students to set up super PACs, a number of them did and bought the Stephen Colbert Super PAC Super Fun Kit online. The kit explained how to set up a super PAC and came with gag gifts.
Mines told HuffPost one of his goals was to air a commercial on TV.
"I think if we can get the money," Mines said. "I would really love to run some local television ads with a short clip on the dangers of super PACs. I've been working on a few ideas for the clip, and if we have the right amount of money roll in, I'd definitely love to get it up locally. Until then, I'll probably just put it on YouTube."
Iannacio and his group in Florida plan to use their super PAC to try to get young people more involved in the political process, but they mostly set up the group for the sake of going through the super PAC paperwork process.
"So far, we've mostly been joking about our message," Merritt told the Times. "Like, let's make an ad satirizing Herman Cain -- turn his tax plan into a pizza deal."
BEFORE YOU GO
Check out some other young people who set up super PACs and look inside the Stephen Colbert Super PAC Super Fun Kit: