MONEY IN politics is generally big money—millions, flowing from mega-corporations to big-name candidates. But there's also activity on the other end of the scale. A handful of political action committees are formed every day that raise or spend little more than a handful of dollars. One such committee, which popped up this month, has the aspirational name of "The Mets Are a Good Team Super PAC." Its headquarters is not in Queens, but rather the suburbs of New York City. The chairman, treasurer and custodian of records has been interested in politics since middle school—which was just a few years ago.
The thing started as a joke. As 15-year-old Ben Aybar grew interested in politics, he grew more suspicious of money in politics. Approaching this year's midterms, he thought he'd try to get involved, even though he's not old enough to vote. "I was interested in using the idea that I could form a Super PAC as being a point against Super PACs," he says. "Look how easy this is to do. If I could do it, anyone can." Within minutes of completing the application, Aybar got an email from the Federal Election Commission: The committee had been verified.
As for the name of Ben's Super PAC, he loves the Mets, just as his parents do. His parents were at Shea Stadium for the 1986 World Series and took Ben to the 2015 playoffs. Now Ben has to consider where to direct the funds. Among his options: Push famously cheap Mets ownership to spend in the offseason, support candidates who share his fandom, or embrace his favorite baseball team's political equivalent—underdogs who refuse large corporate donations. Perhaps that will be his best shot at backing a winner.