Apr 7, 2009

Liberty’s College Democrats are “Up-and-Coming”

by Lee Sandy

At a convention on the campus of the University of Virginia last week, the Virginia Young Democrats (VAYD) awarded Liberty’s College Democrats (LCD) with the “VAYD Up-and-Coming Chapter of the Year” award. Governor Tim Kaine was in attendance when this award was presented, and Liberty University’s College Democrats received a standing ovation.

LCD came onto the Liberty scene shortly before the 2008 presidential election, in an effort to broaden the political landscape of the traditionally conservative university. Despite some adversity, this new chapter has continued to grow and gain acceptance among the student body.

LUCD Vice President Joel Krautter, believes that students are experiencing somewhat of a paradigm shift toward Democrats in general, and are “becoming more knowledgeable on both sides of the issues.”

“The club not only simply exists in this conservative environment,” Krautter said, “but it continues to grow and see noticeable favorable changes in people’s attitudes toward democrats.”

A “Faith Caucus” was formed at The VAYD Convention with LUCD President Brian Diaz elected as its chair. The Faith Caucus will focus on faith and religion in regards to the policies within the Democratic platform. Democratic chapters statewide will support and play a major role in the further development and influence this caucus will have in the future.

“What a better way for Liberty students to get involved,” Diaz said. “I’m looking forward to working with the VAYD not only to shape a better government, but to share the love of Christ.”

While many members of the chapter uphold Christian values, such as pro-life stances, they also think that economic issues such as health care and the welfare of needy people must not be left on the back burner. Diaz hopes that LUCD’s mission on the campus will inspire students to take action in Lynchburg and their own local communities in an effort to better reflect Christ in the world.

The College Republicans Public Relations Director Melinda Zosh sees this organization as a great opportunity for politically engaged students to gain experience in an open forum of discussion on the issues.

“You can’t have College Republicans debating each other,” Zosh said. “Now we can have an open forum where the College Republicans and the College Democrats can debate the issues.”
Zosh thinks it is important to have both a College Republicans and a College Democrats on any academic university.

“I think it’s great for students to have opportunities to explore different viewpoints,” Zosh said. “Having this kind of forum will help prepare students for the world they will go into after they graduate.”

The LUCD will hold its next meeting April 21. For more information, visit the Liberty University College Democrats Facebook page.

Contact Lee Sandy at

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