By Mary Morley
A handful of members gather once a week in the Tanner Building. Their conversations are littered with mention of Rush Limbaugh and “interest bearing accounts.” Every mention of President Clinton is immediately followed by laughs or groans.
They are the BYU College Republicans, and like their soon-to-be-inaugurated president, they are planning for the future as they head into a new year.
On Tuesday they held their first club meeting of the year, discussed goals for the coming semester and elected three new officers.
“The main goal of the semester is to inform the student body about the issues,” said Diana McArthur, 20, a junior from Columbia, S.C.
McArthur, who serves as chairperson of the College Republicans, said students should stay involved with politics all the time, not just during elections.
In this way, students are doing more than just making a decision once every four years, she said.
Instead they are “building a model for being life-long informed citizens,” McArthur said.
Brian Chapman, 21, a sophomore from Garden Grove, Calif., also discussed how students could stay politically active after the elections.
Students should write letters to members of Congress and push their legislators to support or withdraw support from policies, he said.
The second most important goal of the club is “to develop lifelong friendships” among the members, McArthur said.
After some discussion, the first order of business for the year was new officer elections.
The elections were needed in order to fill the empty spaces left in the presidency of the club by members who chose not to continue in leadership roles.
Before voting took place, the candidates introduced themselves and their platforms
Candidates discussed ways to revitalize the club by recruiting new members.
The candidates also mentioned the possibility of creating and maintaining a better Web site to connect members.
The new officers are Robert Turley, second vice chair; Coleen Montgomery, secretary; and Brian Chapman, treasurer.
The College Republicans, including the new officers, will begin their year by celebrating the inauguration of President-elect Bush on Saturday.
After that, club meetings, which will include lectures given by prominent local Republicans, will continue to be held as usual.