The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Saturday June 10th

Ann Coulter speech still possible at UNC

On Tuesday, the UNC College Republicans will go before Student Congress for the second time in less than a month requesting about $20,000 to bring conservative pundit Ann Coulter to campus.

This time, the group’s leaders said fundraising plans are in place to make Coulter’s speech a reality.

In August, the finance committee of Student Congress granted about $15,000 to the group, and about $5,000 attached as a loan. But Student Congress voted to reduce the grant to $5,000 — meaning College Republicans would have to raise $15,000 on its own, which caused leaders to scrap their plans.

On Tuesday, the finance committee approved a request nearly identical to the August allotment.

Greg Steele, the chairman of College Republicans, said being asked to raise $5,000 is far more feasible than $15,000.

“In the past, $5,000 was a very legitimate amount to raise,” Steele said.

Garrett Jacobs, the group’s treasurer, said members plan to solicit help with funding from local conservative groups, and will hold a T-shirt sale in the next two weeks.

But the prospects for approval from Student Congress are unclear. Representatives who debated the issue when it first arose are still questioning the validity of the large speaking fee.

“The average price of speakers is between $2,500 and $5,000,” said Adam Horowitz, chairman of the body’s oversight committee. “This event (cost) is over four times the traditional speaker.”

Last year, College Republicans was granted $15,000 in student fees to fund Republican strategist Karl Rove’s visit to campus.

Horowitz said some representatives were uncomfortable spending such a large sum again.

Jared Simmons, chairman of the finance committee of Student Congress, said the full body could vote to grant College Republicans less than it requested.

Jacobs said he was encouraged by the finance committee’s vote.

“I’m glad that Student Congress has realized that asking a group to raise $15,000 for an event is preposterous and they’ve changed their mind,” he said.

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