The Young Democrats on campus have decided to make a concerted effort at involving themselves in the student elections this year. According to co-presidents Justin Rosenthal and Charlie Sellew (as reported in a recent DTH article) their interests regard nothing more than an getting students more involved in their government. The DTH further explained that the “effort is nonpartisan and has been more focused on endorsement than recruitment.” Not so for the Republicans. For them it is “business as usual.” Tisk, tisk, tisk! They care about “organizing conservative-leaning students to run for seats.”
The apparent ring master of the whole right-wing conspiracy is Duke Cheston, administrative vice chairman of the College Republicans and all around nice guy. But his kind face disguises an evil rarely heard of in Chapel Hill: he’s a fiscal conservative! According to the DTH, Cheston is concerned that the Democrats may try to block funding for conservative groups and events.
No, no, no. Rosenthal dismisses such honky-tonk. The co-president “thinks such fears are misplaced and that liberal representatives won’t base their votes on ideology.” Why, then, would the Republicans think such a thing? Oh, I don’t know, maybe because Charlie Sellew is quoted as saying (back in November) that the YDs want to “restore balance to an organization (congress) that has clearly lost it.” And then there’s this fantastic quote given in response to the $5,000 dollars of student fee money paid to Carolina Students for Life, a conservative group: “[Congress] need[s] something they can actually evaluate things on their merit and not treat everything the same.” As in what? Blocking funding? Also, adding to the Republican’s suspicions, the Young Dems “protested” the Carolina Students for Life’s anti-abortion display last fall much in part because of the large expenditure from Student Government.
What’s more, the Democrats, at their very own SBP debate, explained that when voting to endorse the candidates, their members should consider which administration would best further their interests. Fine and dandy. What else would they consider? But, that said, it is disingenuous to say that their interests do not have anything to do with a specific ideology. Their interests are determined by their shared worldview.
And another thing, the Democrats received the third most amount of money last year from Student Congress; around $10,000 from a supposedly Republican congress. The first and second most amounts were given to such Republican, conservative fringe groups as the GBLIT-SA and the Black Student Movement; $21,000 and $16,000 respectively. Give me a break.