Orman visits WU

Grace Foiles, [email protected], is an undeclared freshman.

Last week, Independent Senate candidate Greg Orman paid a visit to campus to speak with students about state politics and the upcoming election.

While Orman was at WU to campaign, he also discussed the importance of dismantling, what he considers a hyper-partisan system currently in place at the State House. As an independent, one of Orman’s biggest challenges stems from a deeply ingrained partisan attitude amongst voters. A long-standing ‘right vs. left’ mindset has, in his opinion, muddied the political playing field.

“The most common criticism we hear from Republicans is ‘he’s just a Democrat.’ Democrats, on the other hand, tend to say ‘he’s just a Republican.’ I guess in this hyper-partisan environment, the prevailing thinking is that if a candidate isn’t from one’s own party, he/she must be from the other party,” said Orman in a statement posted on his campaign website.

One of Orman’s main points in his speech to WU students involved campaign finance reform.

“We purposely decided not to take PAC money, not to take special interest money in this race because we wanted to go to Washington beholden only to the voters of Kansas,” said Orman. “We didn’t want to feel like we had any obligation to any special interest.”

The lack of young adults who take part in local elections was another concern the candidate tried to drive home to his audience.

“Young people vote about 40 percent of the time, while people over the age of thirty vote almost two- thirds of the time,” said Orman during his speech. “if you don’t vote, ultimately you’re going to find yourself in a position where you don’t have a say over our country’s policies and our country’s politics.”

While Orman did welcome questions from the audience, who gathered in Henderson 100 to hear his lecture, he was hesitant to comment on his stance regarding many of the issues currently heating up the political landscape. Instead of commenting directly, the candidate suggested that the audience refer to his campaign website for answers.

A native of Stanley, Kan., who now resides in Olathe, Orman is vying for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Sen. Pat Roberts. For more information on the candidate and his platform, visit www. ormanforsenate.com.