Zak Marcone has traveled a lot - he has spent significant periods of time in China, Uganda, Japan and Mexico, as well as having lived in four US States: New York, Rhode Island, Missouri and North Carolina. He is currently registered to vote in his hometown of Northport on Long Island, NY.
Zak has been interested in politics and history for as long as he can remember. “I owe a lot to my parents who took me to museums almost every weekend as well as to my wonderful teachers over the years.”
In the past he’s done work for the Democratic Party in a number of capacities. In college, he interned for the Democratic Coalition assisting with Democratic campaigns nationwide. He was most intimately involved with the 2017 special election in Alabama where they were able to get the first Alabama Democrat in decades, Doug Jones, elected to the senate.
Zak is most focused on healthcare, immigration, rooting out corruption, and ensuring that America plays a positive role as a leader on the world stage.
During the 2016 election Zak called out then House Speaker Paul Ryan on a CNN Town Hall.
The video “Paul Ryan: Not voting for Trump is a vote for Clinton” went viral and can be viewed at this link: https://youtu.be/9quPn38agjI
Currently a master’s student in Economics and China Studies at the Yenching Academy of Peking University, he graduated with a BA in Economics and History from Columbia University last year and is interested in a career in public policy or economic development.
He got involved with Democrats Abroad after hearing about the organization from a fellow American at Peking University’s campus.
He told Democrats Abroad China, “If I were to become president I would focus on implementing structural reforms that ensure the president and her/his cabinet is not above the law. Specifically, I would advocate for a constitutional amendment that explicitly states that a president cannot pardon her/himself or reverse a Justice Department policy that forbids any indictments against a sitting president. I would also give up my party membership in a symbolic move to overcome political partisanship. I do not hear these types of actions advocated very often and I feel they are of the utmost importance for the durability of the republic.”
Zak is young, educated, and plugged in. He knows that the biggest challenge facing the Democratic Party is the immense amount of disinformation spreading online and in the media.
Republicans and Democrats exist in two separate perceptions of reality and there is no longer an objective truth that everyone can agree upon. This makes it nearly impossible to identify wrongdoing on behalf of the president. “Most Democrats do not recognize this and have trouble connecting with people outside of cities and blue states,” he warns.
Justin Fischer is an At-Large member of the board for Democrats Abroad China and is currently living in Shanghai. He is registered to vote in Missouri.
He has lived in six states in the past - Michigan, Alabama, Missouri, Florida, Arizona, and Georgia - but China is the only foreign country he has lived in.
Justin became earnestly interested in politics when George W. Bush became president after the 5-4 vote of the Supreme Court in Bush v Gore.
He voted third party back then, which he now thinks was a mistake. The long-term consequences of that election made him realize how important it is to vote, and be engaged with a major political party.
Wealth disparity, curbing excessive corporate power, banking reform are important issues to him.
He believes in building a humane policy toward immigrants and refugees. To that end, he has done volunteer work for the International Rescue Committee (IRC).
The IRC responds to some of the world's worst crises, delivering aid that saves lives while paving the way for long-term recovery. Justin is currently a regular donor to that organization as well as to No Mas Muertes, which advocates for humane treatment of desperate immigrants crossing the southern border of the United States.
Justin works for a public relations agency in Shanghai that helps foreign companies get recognized in China and the APAC region.
If he were President for a day, he would "clean the ketchup stains and Diet Coke can rings off the Resolute Desk.”
Fighting the apathy and cynicism that seems to infect so much of the electorate is job number one for Justin.
“As activists, we are surrounded by like-minded people with the same level of passion. But there are a lot of people out there who think the blame for our problems falls equally on both sides and have just thrown up their hands in frustration.”
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