9-Year-Old Autistic Boy Is Voice of Special Needs Kids at Iowa Caucus (VIDEO)

Sam WesselsIf you've followed the Iowa caucus at all, you've heard names like Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney a few hundred times by now. But here's a name you probably haven't heard much: Sam Wessels. Write it down; he's our future. And he happens to have autism.

Which is what makes the fourth grader's ventures on the campaign trail with his mom so fascinating. Like Ari Garnick, the kid whose dad let him ask the candidates innocuous questions about superheroes, Wessels is actually talking about something HE cares about instead of parroting an adult's message. And his message can help hundreds of thousands of kids out there.


That's because Sam Wessels is talking about having autism with each of the candidates. He started mid-last year with Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty (who has ducked out of the GOP race), and moved on to people like Santorum and Gingrich, pushing them to make a difference for kids with special needs. Considering autism alone now affects on in every 110 kids, little Sam is dragging a lot of kids on his coattails. Watch him in action:

Now, is that an amazing kid, or what? It can be hard to convey the important message that children's issues matter to candidates who are only looking to hear from the people who can actually vote for them. But when you have a child who has a real stake in a matter of national importance (this one hits us in the education sector, the health care sector, and so on), it doesn't hurt to get them involved from day one.

In the Wessels' case, that's meant actually talking to candidates. But you can just as easily sit your child down to write letters to their local legislators. Who can see that scrawling print and pass it up, really?

How are your kids getting involved in the build-up to the 2012 election? Is Sam Wessels speaking for someone in your family?


Image via YouTube

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