Pandemic boredom prompts Tampa Bay boy’s interest in politics

Something Good

He can't vote for six years, but encourages registered voters to take advantage of the right to cast ballots

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Some people have discovered new interests during the pandemic, including a Tampa Bay area middle school student who grew tired of Fortnite and turned his attention to the founding fathers.

When 12-year-old Bryce Picard had enough of playing video games, he took up a new online activity that some might say is even trickier to navigate: Politics.

“I’ve been watching a lot of YouTube videos, there are YouTube channels about elections. And I’ve been rewatching a lot of debates from the past,” said Bryce.

You read that correctly: rewatching. That’s because Bryce watched the Democratic debates, as well as the DNC and RNC events. His parents also require Bryce to balance his TV viewing between a variety of cable news networks.

“I try to get both sides of the story,” Bryce said.

Bryce’s interest in politics stemmed from long walks he’d talk with his Grandpa during the pandemic. He started engaging in Zoom discussions with older relatives and retirees, and even sparked conversations about politics with his friends.

“We talk about policies – what we agree on, what we don’t,” Bryce explained.

While Bryce can’t vote, the 12-year-old is using his own money to send postcards encouraging swing voters to make their voices count in presidential and congressional elections. He’s mailed out 2,400 postcards so far. 

Bryce’s mom Lisa says her son leaned into pandemic boredom and is now teaching Grandpa, and her, a thing or two.

“Other than Fortnite all the time, he made me watch a documentary on the history of the electoral college a couple of weeks ago,” Lisa said.

And while Bryce can’t vote for another six years, he does get a say in the next family vacation. If he had to vote between a trip to Disney World or Washington, D.C., he’d pick the nation’s capital.


Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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