Youngest congressman will visit UK

By Becca Clemons

UK students will have another chance to be a part of the Nov. 2 midterm elections.

U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock will visit campus to support congressional candidate Andy Barr. The forum will take place at noon Friday in front of the Main Building.

Barr is running for U.S. House of Representatives on the Republican ticket in Kentucky’s sixth congressional district, which includes Fayette County.

Schock’s visit is sponsored by UK Student Government and the UK College Republicans.

“We’re in the middle of a pivotal election, and regardless of their political party it’s good for students to be exposed to various political opinions and perspectives so they can form their own opinions,” SG President Ryan Smith said.

SG also helped sponsor former U.S. president Bill Clinton’s recent visit to campus in support of Jack Conway, Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate.

Smith said SG wants to give equal treatment to both sides, and bringing an elected official to campus is a great experience for students.

“We co-sponsored the Clinton event, and we did so as an educational forum,” Smith said. “We were lucky to have President Clinton a few weeks ago, and it’s great to have a balance.”

He said SG does not endorse either candidate, but the visit helps promote civic engagement and participation among UK students.

Schock is the youngest U.S. congressman, at 29 years old, making him more relatable to college students because of a smaller age gap, Smith said.

Brian Rose, chairman of the College Republicans, also cited age as a good reason for bringing Schock to campus.

“He represents a lot of what we’re moving toward,” Rose said. “I think he’d be a good voice here to speak with students.”

Rose said it is an election year, and people want to hear from a political speaker. He said the College Republicans got a large outreach from students who wanted to hear a conservative speaker on campus in response to Clinton and Conway’s forum.

“Congressman Aaron Schock represents a new generation of leadership in Washington that will work to stop out of control government spending, reverse the government takeover of healthcare and protect American jobs,” said John Connell, a member of Barr’s campaign. “I am honored to have the support of Congressman Schock, and I look forward to welcoming him to Central Kentucky.”

Barr’s stop in Lexington is part of his tour to visit every county in Kentucky’s 6th District between Oct. 25 and Oct. 30, his campaign website says, “to rally volunteers and answer voters’ questions in the final week before the election.”

The forum is free and open to the public.