National News

Long-shot mayoral candidate uses creativity to try for millennial vote

Posted August 24

— With so many mayoral candidates in the race, a 30-year-old cartoon illustrator by the name of Alex Barrella figured why not join in?

Barrella doesn't have much political clout, which means he hasn't been invited to any of the candidate forums. Still, he's out to prove that with a little creativity, anyone can run for mayor.

Reaction from his friends and family varied, Barrella said, when he told them he's putting his hat in the ring for mayor of Atlanta.

"Most friends are like, 'That's awesome. You should run.' Some people are like, 'You're crazy,'" he said.

Instead of trying to raise campaign funds, Barrella is doing all of his own campaigning. He makes his own bumper stickers. He makes his own campaign signs too, most of which are business-card style. He attaches them to toothpicks and places them in clusters near other candidates' signs, hoping to get the attention of people passing by on foot.

He doesn't have a slick website, just a blog and his Twitter page with his comical propaganda art in an effort to court the millennial vote. He's learning exposure is tough. He only has 83 followers so far.

Barrella said he can't afford the $5,529 qualifying fee. But there's a provision for candidates like Alex Barrella -- a pauper's affidavit swearing that they can't afford it.

Barrella told CBS46, if elected, he'll ensure cheap, fast internet for everyone. He wants safe sidewalks, and he says he'll push for a basic city-wide income in which the government provides residents with $1,000 a month. He describes himself as a left-leaning radical, but you won't find him at any protests.

"I don't like crowds and I don't like being in them," Barrella said jokingly.

He's serious, though, about running for mayor on his radical platform. Barrella said he's planning to turn in his qualifying paperwork at Atlanta City Hall by Friday's deadline.

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