San Jose conservative candidates speak at SJSU Student Union
By Kelsey Hilario
October 6, 2010
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U.S. Congress candidate Dan Sahagun talks with Richard Lewis, a Santa Cruz political organizer, following an informational event about conservative Silicon Valley candidates Wendesday in the Student Center. Photo by Jack Barnwell
Scott Kirkland’s two kids were part of the reason, among others, why the Republican candidate decided to run for congress, he said.
Kirkland, along with five other local candidates — Frank Jewett, Larry Pegram, Minh Duong and Dan Sahagun, spoke in the Umunhum room of the Student Union on Wednesday afternoon.
Both Kirkland and Jewett are SJSU alumni.
The event was hosted by Campus Liberty Movement and College Republicans.
The movement is a grass-roots organization that introduces ideas to people and educates them on how to vote, working to empower high school and college conservatives, said Elly Varbanets, chairwoman for Campus Liberty Movement.
“We partner with existing campuses to solidify conservative, free-market thinking,” she said.
Each candidate was given several minutes to speak and accept questions from the audience.
Freshman biology major Henna Sayah was on the fence about all of the candidates.
“They were different from what I thought,” she said. “I kind of agree with some of them and definitely disagree with others.”
Senior psychology major Evelyn Shieh said she was frustrated with Dan Sahagun’s disapproval of gay marriage.
Sahagun said he voted yes on Proposition 8 and believes men and women are only allowed to marry because they are able to procreate.
“I saw a fundamental contradiction when he said he supports rights for gays but completely ostracizes them when it comes to marriage,” Shieh said.
Although Sahagun is a naturalized U.S citizen originally from Mexico, he said illegal immigrants should not be made citizens but rather legal citizens who pay taxes.
Sayah and Shieh both said the candidate they could most identify with was Kirkland.
“His policies were interesting,” Shieh said. “He is on the younger side and he seems like he believes more in younger ideals. I can relate more to what he is saying.”
According to Kirkland’s campaign brochure, he opposes bailouts of private industries, supports laws requiring a balanced budget and supports a free-market reform of health care.
Kirkland does not support Proposition 19, but said he is in favor of legal immigration.
“I have friends who have gone through the process,” he said. ”It is unfair to taxpayers to let people come in illegally. We need to protect our borders and put a stop to illegal immigration and the burden that unaccounted people have on our economy.”
If elected, Kirkland said he will work to put forward a two-pronged approach to efficient energy production.
“We need to take advantage of what we already have, drilling and nuclear energy, and offer an incentive to businesses who partake,” he said.
There are two things Kirkland said he would like students to know.
“I am a younger businessman and a parent,” he said. “I have not been tainted by the political system and I am fighting for jobs. I am against current policies that will not help students find jobs after school.”
According to the Campus Liberty Movement website, the organization will be hosting events throughout the campaign and into the rest of the year and are looking for board volunteer
One Response to “San Jose conservative candidates speak at SJSU Student Union”
Ted Rudow III,MA says:
October 10, 2010
It turns out that not quite 20 percent of Americans are tea party supporters. Those who are tend to be white, Republican, male, older than 45 and wealthier than the rest of us. Fifty-seven percent hold a favorable opinion of George W. Bush. And where most Republicans describe themselves as “dissatisfied” with Washington, tea partiers are apt to use a different term.
They say they’re angry. It is a telling word, especially in light of another survey, this one from the University of Washington’s Institute for the Study of Ethnicity, Race & Sexuality. That poll offers strong evidence that, contrary to the denials of tea party enthusiasts, President Barack Obama’s race plays a big role in their outrage.
After all, if the tea partiers were truly only concerned about so-called “tyranny,” they’d have started howling when Bush claimed he need not be bound by laws with which he disagreed.
Ted Rudow III,MA
class of 1996