Saturday, September 12, 2015

Rand Paul student group now over 300 chapters

Rand Paul sees students as his ticket to White House - - Tal Kopan:

September 12, 2015 - "Trying to find a path to the Republican presidential nomination, Rand Paul is going back to school.

"The Kentucky senator is looking to build on his father's strong finish in the 2012 Iowa caucuses this presidential cycle -- and he's hoping Iowa's large student population can be his secret weapon.

"The organizing has already begun. Friday night, Paul [was] at Iowa State University for a Stand with Rand student rally -- where he announced that his campaign had more than surpassed its goal to open 300 new Students for Rand chapters in 30 days.

"The effort was announced in August, and on Friday, Paul announced that his campaign has 339 student chapters nationwide, days ahead of schedule.

"In Iowa, the campaign has 16 college chapters, including its inaugural chapter at University of Iowa and other units at Iowa State, University of Northern Iowa and Drake University....

"'The ideas that Rand stands for are what get youth excited, and we are going to build this infrastructure in a way that we can take that excitement and build it into actual votes so Rand can win this nomination,' said Cliff Maloney, the national youth director for Paul's presidential campaign.... 'If we get 10,000 students to caucus for Rand, we're going to be in a very good position," Maloney said, declining to predict a finishing place.

"But his strategy could pay off big, said Alex Smith, national chairwoman of the College Republican National Committee.

"'There is a huge, huge opportunity for young people to be reached by these campaigns, because altering those (Iowa) numbers even just slightly, especially when you're talking about the difference between first and second or second and third, you could alter the whole balance of the election by just tinkering with those few votes,' Smith said. And, she noted, she's seen some of the right moves from the Paul campaign.

"'You can't send direct mail or advertising to an 18-24 year old on a college campus, that's just not going to work,' Smith said, emphasizing the importance of tailored, personal outreach. "But if you look at Rand Paul, he was one of the first candidates to be on SnapChat ... he often visits college campuses, which not many candidates do, and those are two examples of where he's taking his message, again a relevant message to this generation, directly to them.'"

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