The College Republicans of UW-Madison are happy to report many successes from the past year, both as a student organization this semester and a greater part of the Republican Party this past year.
It is no secret that the University of Wisconsin’s stereotypical breakdown of student political affiliation on campus remains, well, liberal. But that did not keep our chapter from growing. This semester, we tallied 147 dues-paying members on our roster and 11 executive board positions.
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We’ve also expanded our chapter events. Every election-cycle semester is busy, but we went all out this time. We brought major candidates directly to our members including Gov. Scott Walker and Leah Vukmir. Our event with Walker marked more than 200 in attendance. We also hosted a new member bonfire, Get Out the Vote events and two events ringing bells for the Salvation Army, to name a few.
Regardless of which party is in power, bipartisanship is important for a civil, functioning government. Our organization continues to lead by example each semester by pursuing bipartisan events on campus. This semester, we co-hosted our annual 9/11 event, a debate watch party, a debate with the College Democrats and a Veterans’ Day event.
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In addition, our board and organization worked to promote voter turnout on campus by partnering with UW and the Big Ten Voting Challenge to promote voter registration. Every vote counts, and we partnered with this program to ensure every student on campus knew exactly that.
But success is not exclusive to our chapter of College Republicans. The Republican Party as a whole has a lot to be proud of this year. As one of the most important accomplishments of 2018, Justice Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed to the U.S. Supreme Court as an associate justice Oct. 6. Kavanaugh was touted by many with his superb record, experience and qualifications. Kavanaugh’s addition to the high court marks a step forward for America and the court.
Furthermore, America’s economy has continued to grow. After the post-Trump election economic boom, many waited for growth to slow — it didn’t happen. In fact, throughout 2018, most economists never thought the economy could grow as fast as it has. In 2018, Wisconsin saw unemployment at or below 3 percent for nine straight months — a state record. The U.S. GDP growth outpaced 4.2 percent in quarter two of 2018, marking the fastest rise in nearly four years. Our policies work, and they work well.
On another note, the national opioid epidemic continues to take the lives of many Americans, and the Trump administration along with Republican lawmakers have led the fight to end the epidemic this year. In their first step, the Republican-led House and Senate passed a comprehensive relief package which was later signed by Trump. Our own Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wisconsin, praised the package noting its prospect to “combat the opioid epidemic on multiple fronts.”
Do you remember hearing about the blue wave set to arrive in the U.S. Nov. 6? It never came. In a historic event, the party of the president added seats in the U.S. Senate as a result of this year’s midterm election. There have only been five times in the last 105 years that a sitting president has won seats in the Senate in the off-year election. Not only did the blue wave fail to hit the U.S. nationally, but it also subsided in Wisconsin. Republicans maintained control in both state legislative chambers, sending a message to Wisconsin that they won’t stop fighting to keep Wisconsin moving forward.
As a chapter this semester and as a party in 2018, we are immensely proud of our accomplishments and we are excited to continue our progress into 2019. Let’s get to work.
Alec Bukowiec ([email protected]) is a sophomore studying marketing and information systems with a certificate in digital studies. He is also the Social Media Director for College Republicans of UW-Madison.