B-PaRC holds referendum forum for seniors

B-PaRC holds referendum forum for seniors

Bryan Doyle, Staff Reporter

Elliot Louthen leads the Q&A section

Trent Baer

Bradley Wilson, Editor-in-Chief

On Tuesday March 8th, a referendum forum much like the one held at Komarek on March 2nd, was held for seniors. A new student group, B-PaRC (Bipartisan Referendum Coalition), started and organized by Elliot Louthen, ran the event. The event was held during both 6th and 7th hours and was well attended.

The purpose of the event was to inform seniors about the upcoming referendum, since Louthen realized many of his fellow seniors weren’t informed. He did not want to exclusively promote his view on the referendum, but rather inform students from all sides, and let them make the decision for themselves.

He said, “In speaking to other RB students, I realized that many were uninformed on the issue and other students felt it did not matter. I wanted to change that, so I came up with the idea to recreate the forum at Komarek and inform students on the issue.”

Both sides of the issue were presented, with three students representing each side. Louthen, Kate Walsh, and Paul Landahl represented the pro side, and Fitz Robling, Thomas Linehan, and Andrew Brondos presented the negative side.

Several of the students have parents involved one way or another in the referendum discussion. Walsh’s father Tim Walsh is running for one of the vacant board seats, who hasn’t publicly stated a position on the referendum. Landahl’s father Jim Landahl is actively involved with CURB, a pro-referendum group. Robling’s father Chris Robling presented the negative side of the issue at the Komarek forum, and has been a former board candidate in the past.

Louthen opened his presentation saying, “ We want to leave a legacy for future students and future classes, we want them to have the same opportunities that we had here at RB.”

Brondos, representing the other viewpoint, said, “We are here to show the other side of things. Since we’re at RB, we pretty much only hear one side, so hopefully this will inform you.”

Both sides gave PowerPoint guided speeches giving both facts and opinions, and then the floor was opened up to students for questions. Questions were mostly directed at one side or the other, but both sides were allowed to answer all or any questions.

Another big push of the event was to encourage voting for those who are eligible. Both sides stressed the issue, regardless of viewpoint. Voter registration was available at the event for those who weren’t registered, but were going to be turning eighteen before April 5th.

Linehan said, “I want everyone to vote whether or not they support the referendum. Everyone that is a part of this event wants kids to utilize their right to vote, and express their opinion. Everyone should have a chance to be a part of our democratic system.”