A groundbreaking political fundraising platform in the form of a computer app which seeks to reinvent how candidates raise money and how voters engage in electoral politics, was launched recently in the US.
The new app, dubbed Prytany, “enables people to democratize politics,” says Christopher Tavlarides, one its three Greek-American founders.
“Ultimately, Prytany is a call to action,” maintains Tavlarides, who is the co-founder of the Independent party. “This is democracy at its finest. Conversations and ideas turn into action,” he added.
“We decided to create Prytany because our country is becoming too divided and intolerant of different points of view,” said Royal Kastens, the Democratic co-founder of Prytany.
“Often, the will of the majority does not directly lead to political change, due to a variety of special interests. So, three of us, a Republican, a Democrat and an Independent, decided to create Prytany to close that gap and facilitate direct engagement among voters and with elected officials and candidates,” he explained.
Prytany is a non-partisan platform which combines the best features of both fundraising and social media applications. It serves as a virtual meeting space for constituents, candidates and elected officials to talk about the issues that matter most to them.
It also serves as a tool for learning about political races and, unlike other donor platforms, allows for an aggregation of political donations.
The Prytany app received unanimous Federal Election Commission (FEC) approval on April 11, 2019.
Tavlarides emphasized that he and the two other owners were, as a group, incredibly frustrated with how small donors were marginalized in the political process — and they looked to their Greek heritage for an answer.
The name Prytany comes directly from the creators of democracy. In ancient Greece, the “Prytany” was the rotational executive seat of power in the Athenian Senate. The Prytany served as the “president” of the legislative body for one term, and was chosen at random so that no one could predict who would come next.
This was a unique element of ancient democracy which ensured that all voices were heard, and the new app embodies this ancient political concept.
Republican co-founder John Polis pointed out that “Prytany delivers a balanced platform that doesn’t have its finger on the scale trying to advance one side over the other. It is important for people to be civil with one another, but it is essential for neither side to feel that the medium or outlet is against them from the start.”
Tavlarides estimates that “2020 will be the most significant and largest fund-raising event in the history of American politics. More money will be spent by both parties trying to capture the White House and the Senate and the House than any year in the history of American politics – at least 6 billion dollars will be spent for the 2020 elections.”
He explains “Our goal is to bring a little bit more parity to the 6 billion dollars, because right now most of that money is essentially being contributed by very few amount of wealthy people.
“So we anticipate not only capturing a chunk of the 6 billion dollars that is being spent, but we’re hoping to increase that number by attracting more small donors onto our platform, enabling more people to have an equal share of voice in the political process,” he adds.
Prytany is the cheapest, fastest and most transparent application of its kind. It doesn’t cost anything to join as a user, and the fees for candidates are the lowest of any political contribution processor servicing candidates of any party.
The political app ActBlue’s transaction fees are 3.95 percent on each contribution and WinRed’s are 3.8 percent + 30 cents on each contribution. Prytany’s fees are only 3 percent.
As a social media platform, Prytany ensures accountability from government leaders and it serves to facilitate discussion among groups around a particular candidate or issue. Prytany actually coalesces these diverse groups with different interests onto one platform, for the ease of both constituent and candidate.
The official launch coincided with the first Democratic Primary debates for the 2020 elections in Miami. Prytany hopes to engage candidates and constituents early on, so that they have a new platform through which to contribute, to debate issues and ideas, and to connect with other like-minded groups or individuals.
You can download the Prytany app on the Apple Store or on Google Play. To learn more about this groundbreaking app, visit prytany.com, and join the conversation on Twitter @thePrytany.