Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Students express frustrations with GOP primary debate

Courtesy of UA College Democrats

When NewsNation hosted the fourth Republican primary debate at Moody Music Building on Wednesday evening, many students expressed frustration with its location and impact on campus.

While the event was not open to the public, the SGA gave 25 organizations a limited number of tickets to distribute to their members.

Christian Martin, a sophomore majoring in history and theater, expressed his frustration with the event.

“I hate it when you host an event that is supposed to support and encourage civic engagement amongst your students, then almost none of your students can come,” Martin said.

Due to the debate’s on-campus location, parking lot closures and traffic detours were enforced.

Jackson Diaz-Drake, a senior majoring in criminal justice, said getting to campus took him longer than usual.

“I feel like it’s an inconvenience to everybody who is here on campus trying to do final exams,” Diaz-Drake said. “It’s a logistical nightmare.”

In response to the debate, UA College Democrats held an event titled “We Dare Defend Our Rights” held in Room 125 in ten Hoor Hall, the home to UA’s political science department. 

UA College Democrats stated in the initial announcement on Nov. 29 that the event, named after Alabama’s state motto, would be a stand against “fascist forces.”

“We hope to see everybody there as we begin our efforts to win up and down the ballot in 2024,” the organization wrote in the Instagram post. 

The event included a viewing of the fourth presidential debate, which featured former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former South Carolina governor and United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, and entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy.

Paige Edwards, a senior majoring in economics and vice president of the organization, said she wishes the debate weren’t held on campus. 

“We have so many right-wing speakers and so much right-wing attention,” Edwards said. “The administration doesn’t seem to provide support for the communities that may be targeted.”

The debate is the latest event to feature prominent right-wing figures on campus, eight months after former Vice President Mike Pence spoke at an event sponsored by Young Americans for Freedom here at the University, sparking similar outrage.

Editor-in-chief Ashlee Woods contributed to the reporting of this piece.

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