Opinion: Kent State College Republicans take on CPAC

Jennifer Hutchinson is a sophomore political science major. Contact her at [email protected]

Jennifer Hutchinson

The Kent State College Republicans made their way to Washington D.C. this weekend for the Conservative Political Action Conference.

The student organization attends CPAC every year. It is an excellent opportunity for young conservatives to hear from a number of top political officials, as well as meet fellow College Republicans from across the country.

Dillon Lloyd, Chairman of the Ohio College Republicans, commented that a big part of CPAC is the networking. He explained that there are a number of campaigns and organizations to get involved with, and that as you meet people your own age, and build friendships, you also expand your network across the state and even across the country.

In addition, not only is CPAC beneficial for the College Republicans, but also for all of Kent State University.

“There are a lot of leadership opportunities,” said President of the Kent State College Republicans Christian Pancake. “We can bring information back to Kent State to energize the student body, and offer insight that expands beyond conservatism.”

In addition to hearing from speakers, including potential presidential candidates like Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, and Chris Christie, the Kent State College Republicans got a rare opportunity to personally meet Jeb Bush, Sarah Palin, and Senator Rob Portman.

Chairman Llyod, who helped organize the events, noted “Everyone liked the private sessions; kids enjoyed getting to take part in the meet and greets with them, and hear them answer their questions.”

Jeb Bush kept it cool and did better than expected during his appearance at CPAC, after being subjected to harsh boos and protests from some of those attending the conference. Bush referred to his admirable tenure as the former Florida Governor, as well as described himself as a practicing, reform-minded conservative.

While for right now Bush is looking like the clear frontrunner, he may find some stiff competition with Governor Scott Walker and Senator Rand Paul. Both potential candidates were welcomed by packed audiences and standing ovations, with Rand Paul winning the straw once again, and Walker following right behind him.

However, I was surprised to see one name noticeably missing from the CPAC straw poll; our own Governor John Kasich. However, that doesn’t mean he couldn’t still be considering a run.

CPAC is an immensely beneficial event that not only offers countless opportunities for jobs and networking, but also builds relationships that are ever expanding. The Kent State College Republicans progressed themselves as young conservatives and represented the university proudly. The knowledge they gained will not only advance their own organization, but all of Kent State, as the College Republicans keep it an active political unit in Ohio.