Campus political groups prepare for the future

The two main campus political clubs, ND College Republicans and ND College Democrats, entered their final fundraising sprint for Notre Dame Day on April 23. 

For the past 11 years, Notre Dame Day has provided various groups on campus the opportunity to share their vision and raise money from the Notre Dame community. It is a celebration of all things Notre Dame, in which the global community of Our Lady’s University supports their favorite campus charity organizations, dorms, causes, and clubs. It consists of online fundraising through the ND Day website, as well as speeches and events on campus. Notre Dame President Father John Jenkins, C.S.C. kicked off the celebration at 6:42 p.m. on Tuesday, April 23, and the Notre Dame Band’s trumpet section will conclude the event by performing on God Quad just before midnight on April 24. 

The ND College Republicans currently have a commanding lead on the ND Day donations page. At the time of writing, they have raised 5,405 dollars from 91 individual donors, while the College Democrats have raised 621 dollars from 15 individual donors. One of the more notable donations to the College Republicans was a 100 dollars contribution from Congressman Rudy Yakym III, who represents Indiana’s Second Congressional District, which includes South Bend. 

Last year, the College Republicans managed to raise a total of 18,380 dollars from 209 donors. The College Democrats did not not make the list of the top 25 totals raised, so their totals for last year were not listed on the ND Day website.

Elliot Anderson, President of the College Republicans, commented, “The ND College Republicans are shaping up to be, again, one of the most effective clubs on campus at raising money for our cause and mission. Thanks to our amazing members and families, advisor Jamie O’Brien, and committed alumni network, we have raised thousands of dollars. These funds will go to great use in the fall when we bring exciting speakers to ND  for the 2024 election cycle.” 

Sophomore Shri Thakur, Director of Political Affairs for the club, elaborated further on the story behind the club’s prodigious fundraising. “The ND Republicans will be spreading the word on social media and contacting its alumni network to fundraise ahead of ND Day. We attribute our massive advantage over the College Democrats to the great work of our faculty advisor, Jamie O’Brien; excitement amongst Republicans to put Donald J. Trump back in the White House this November; and a successful year of events such as the Nick Adams talk and recruitment with Project 2025.” 

Thakur and Anderson were not alone in sharing their appreciation for faculty advisor Jamie O’Brien, a professor in the Mendoza College of Business. Scores of tributes to O’Brien filled the online donations page on the ND Day website, with many members lauding their advisor as “a great Republican.”

O’Brien was equally appreciative of the efforts of the club’s members, telling the Rover, “The College Republican students are very hardworking and diligent. They regularly show up and participate in club events, and they are always quite respectful. It is really neat to see young men and women willing to fight for what they believe in, and the ND College Republicans are truly the Fighting Irish—fighting for conservative principles and political freedom.” 

The Rover reached out to the ND College Democrats for comment, but they did not respond. Their page on the ND Day website provided more details about their vision and plans for using their funds raised, saying, “We will continue in-person programming to build our community on campus, enable students to phone bank and canvass in South Bend, bring Democratic speakers to campus, and foster relationships with incredible student groups and alumni.” 

Anyone wishing to support their fellow students in these noble efforts will have the perfect opportunity to do so this week on Notre Dame Day.

Xavier Anderson is a freshman studying finance. After getting a buzz cut, he realized—like Samson—that all his powers were gone. Send him condolences at

Photo Credit: The Irish Rover

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