As the midterm elections approached, The Center welcomed an international visitor group comprised of various nationalities who came to Indianapolis to observe the American electoral system.
Representatives of Finland, Switzerland, Chile, Armenia, Malaysia, and Fiji each took part in educational excursions around the state. These included canvassing on behalf of J.D. Ford (who eventually won a state Senate seat for District 29), attending a Trump rally in Fort Wayne and visiting Southridge High School to observe student government.
One of the visitors said that attending the rally in Fort Wayne was the highlight of the program. Although none of the visitors were necessarily supporters of the president, they were excited to see well-known figures such as Ivanka Trump and Kellyanne Conway at the event. Several visitors remarked that politics in the United States seemed "more like a spectacle" than a discussion of serious policy.
During the trip, the group also stopped in Muncie to meet with Victor Whitehead, Chair of the Delaware County Republicans, and then-candidate for County Clerk.The visitors learned about local government, and distinctions between city, county, and school districts.
At the Center, the group enjoyed a pre-election discussion with Brandon J. Smith, Statehouse Bureau Chief for Indiana Public Broadcasting, and a dialogue about the results of the elections the follow Wednesday with John Ketzenberger, director of government relations for The Nature Conservancy.
Among the cultural and leisure activities that the IVLP group were treated to included a visit the International Motor Speedway and the top of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, as well as eating at KFC, McDonald's, and Kilroy's Bar and Grill.
Some lasting impressions that the visit made on the group, according to visitor Greg Burnside, was that "Americans seem less politically engaged" to them than citizens of their home countries, and less willing to work towards change on issues such as gerrymandering. There were also noted differences in the electoral process, such as canvassing or the amount of money spent on campaigns.