Election 2012: Q&A with Brian Matos of Chicago Young Republicans

By Tyler Carter and LaVar Merrell
The Red Line Project

Posted: Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2012

Brian Matos, communications director for the Chicago Young Republicans, decided at a young age to take an opposite stance of what political party to align with than what is usually expecting growing up in Chicago.

“Growing up in a city like Chicago, that is majority Democratic, I wanted to see what the other side was all about,” Matos said.

A passion for politics led Matos to join the Chicago Young Republicans organization. The Chicago Young Republicans chapter was found in 2005 as a sub-chapter of the National Young Republicans Foundation.

The Chicago Young Republicans organization is a place where young Republicans can gather and share the same views with others alike from Chicago and surrounding areas.

Matos took some time recently to talk about the upcoming elections, his expectations and the role that Chicago Young Republicans plays.

Q. What has the Chicago Young Republicans done to make sure people get to the voting polls on Nov. 6?

A: It has been tough because in 2012 we have not had a lot of competitive races in the city. There is not a governor’s race, there is no senators race making the only statewide race on the ballot the presidential race. We know that Illinois will go to Obama, because of this we have been helping in many of the congressional races in the suburbs and downstate. Our goal is to make sure that our people know who their candidates are in their district and where their voting polls are located.

Q. Does the Chicago Young Republicans visit with colleges discussing the importance of voting?

A: We occasionally get invitation from colleges. Since college students are able to vote, sometimes it just takes a group like ours to bring registration papers for students to fill out. A lot of college students are not from Illinois so they may need to re-register so they can vote in Chicago or in Cook County elections.

Q. What is Deserve Victory?

A: It is not enough to say we got the better candidate or we are right on one issue, you have to earn win. It means you have to do a better job explaining people your positions and explain rationally what it is you believe. That is what Deserve Victory is all about.

Q. How is Deserve Victory related to Mitt Romney?

A:  In the last 30 days of the race, the Romney is going to spend time in the states that he thinks is most critical. Its up to the campaign to decide what other states they think he has a really strong chance in. It’s also interesting from a political standpoint to see what states he doesn’t visit. We are looking closely to see if whether or not he makes a run in his home state of Michigan. Wisconsin is the home state of his running mate Paul Ryan. And if he spends some time there, then we believe he may have a pretty good shot to win that state.

Q. What are Romney’s chances of winning the 2012 election?

A: It is going to come down to people believing that his economic plan is a legitimate plan or not. Everyone has been frustrated with the economy not just in the last four years but also in with in the last decade. During these debates he is going to have to get specific on what his plan is and make sure people understand it. It is crucial that he obtains the vote of the swing states especially Florida. With the number of electoral votes that Florida has if Romney does not win Florida it will be hard to see how he can put enough states together to make up for the loss.

Q. How is a Mitt Romney win going to benefit future students and students already in college?

A: If you get the economy moving again you get more jobs. The worst thing for a college graduate is to leave school with a degree, a great resume and no job opportunities to go into. If the economy maintains a high level of unemployment  job growth remains stagnant or relatively low  and you don’t get a lot of new businesses to start. All of the focus is on economic a reform that moves the economy forward. If it doesn’t move, then students have nowhere to go.

Return to Election 2012Home page

Feedback: Contact the reporters via Twitter, leave a comment below, submit a story idea or report an error.