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Barber talks congressional issues with UA Young Democrats

Hailey+Eisenbach%2FArizona+Daily+Wildcat%0A%0ARon+Barber+meets+with+the+UA+chapter+of+the+Young+Democrats+at+Espresso+Art+on+Thurs.%2C+August+24.
Hailey Eisenbach
Hailey Eisenbach/Arizona Daily Wildcat Ron Barber meets with the UA chapter of the Young Democrats at Espresso Art on Thurs., August 24.

In their first meeting of the semester, the UA Young Democrats hosted Rep. Ron Barber for the first time after his being elected for Tucson’s Eighth District.

The meeting saw about three times as many students as a typical meeting, according to Elaine Mills, the vice president of Young Democrats and a public policy and management junior. The group discussed a number of issues, ranging from health care to taxes for the poor and working class. For some, Barber’s attendance was an important aspect to discussing future policies in Congress.

“For us, this is going to be our country that we will inherit and it’s very important that we make the right decisions,” said Ocean Tenborg, environmental chemistry junior.

Barber discussed his stance on the opportunity to help provide veterans with the services they need and to also help the middle class along with the poor working class. It was time to tell the millionaires to step up and pay their shares, he said, adding that while he thinks President Obama has made improvements, there are still areas to work on.

“I strongly support the president in what he is trying to do, considering the economical situation the country was in when he took office,” Barber added. “He has done a lot and still has a long way to go.”

While Ron Barber had attended Young Democrats meetings as early as last semester, members said they were pleased to host him during his time in office.

“Being here as a congressman is a reward for them,” said Erik Lundstrom, the president of the Young Democrats of Arizona and a political science senior. “They put in the hard work to go around and knock on doors and now they get to meet him.”

One of the main goals that the UA Young Democrats will be focusing on this semester is continuing to work on the national campaigns and promote students to register to vote for the upcoming presidential election, Mills said, adding thatthey hope to register two to three thousand students for the upcoming election.

Each student has a different understanding of politics, she added, and that having Barber attend the meeting showed just how connected the students can be with politics and meeting those who represent them in elections.

“I saw a huge room of students obviously interested enough to come out and be involved in Young Democrats,” Barber said, “and no matter what their party affiliation is, it’s important for them to go out and volunteer in a campaign.”

After the meeting was adjourned, Barber made the rounds introducing himself to students as he discussed with them their future interests.

“I am really excited to see so many students have attended the meeting and to be active,” Barber said, “because without their involvement their voice can’t be heard and I hope they encourage more students to stand up to be involved in the political process.”

Barber, who won against Jesse Kelly in June to finish out former Rep. Gabriele Giffords’ term in Tucson’s Eighth District, is now up for re-election in the same, renamed Second District.

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