The NYU College Republicans know they’re outnumbered. But they’re ready to talk. They’re ready to argue.
So, on Thursday nights at 7 p.m., you’ll find the group in meetings of about 20 people in their conservative safe-haven, hashing out major right wing talking points, drafting makeshift resolutions to gun control debates while lobbying for the final slice of free pizza. It is their free market, where they choose how to share their views and beliefs free from the university-wide stigma placed on them.
Stern senior and Secretary for College Republics Ben Swinehart said the mission of the club is to increase discussion surrounding conservative ideology.
“NYU is an incredibly liberal university and we are one of the few conservative, leading clubs on campus with a sizable influence,” Swinehart said.
CAS senior and Media and Communications Director for College Republicans Matthew Glaser said the club is a way for students of all backgrounds to learn more about the GOP.
“We associate ourselves with a party and not just a principle, although the Republican Party is thought of as a party of principle,” Glaser said. “We are a platform where students can come express and learn more about conservative ideology, and what GOP candidates have to offer.”
With March Madness approaching, SPS junior Eli Nachmany, the Field Director for College Republicans, created a March Madness Republican Primary bracket for the club. The attendees of the “Debriefing the Iowa Caucuses” meeting voted, with the majority favoring candidate Marco Rubio.
The club hosts informative and social events, all structured on the conservative mindset. Past speakers include Fox News correspondents, policy experts and candidates for office at the state, municipal and federal level.
SPS sophomore Cole Solaas joined College Republicans because of the consistent views held between the organization and his family.
“I was raised in a Republican family, and this group is in many ways representative of a little piece of home because they hold the same conservative views as my parents hold,” Solaas said. “I am able to have similar interactions and discussions as I would back at home.”
College Republicans encourages students to educate themselves on current issues based on the prospect that this generation will eventually be administrators of this country.
And the group is certainly hoping this happens. In a country that seems to have shifted to the left among young people in the last decade — as evidenced by the wide-ranging support for Vermont senator Bernie Sanders in the presidential race — the College Republicans are trying to mobilize a new generation on the right side of the aisle.
While previous club events have allowed for greater national political advocacy, Nachmany stressed the importance of continued conservative activism on college campuses.
“As young people, it is our duty to make sure the conservative voice is not drowned out by the liberal inclination that young individuals tend to have,” Nachmany said. “Through engaging programming and our great members, we are sure we have a positive, if indirect, impact on voter turnout.”
A version of this article appeared in the Monday, Feb. 8 print edition. Email Greta Chevance at [email protected].