Not even last week’s snow could keep an intimate group of students, faculty and alumni from meeting at the School of Media and Public Affairs Wednesday night to honor Illinois congressional hopeful John Morris.
“None of you can vote for me,” Morris told the attendees, “but I couldn’t run without coming back to where it all began.” Morris, a GW alumnus, was Student Association president in 1990 and a founder and first fellow of the Presidential Administrative Fellowship. “This university has influenced every day of my life since,” he said.
Morris is hoping to fill a Congressional seat being vacated by retiring Rep. Ray LaHood (R-Ill.) and to represent the 18th Congressional District of Illinois. He is vying for the position against two other candidates.
“One candidate is exceptionally good… That’s me,” he joked.
Morris took a more serious tone regarding his intention to bring conservative Midwestern values to Washington.
“We don’t need more D.C. in Illinois; we need more Illinois in D.C.,” he said. His primary focus is national security, and he wants to allocate a greater percentage of the country’s GDP to defense.
“The number one obligation of a member of Congress is to keep the security of the United States first and foremost,” he said.
Morris addressed questions from students by including a slew of personal anecdotes laced with advice on how to succeed in the political arena. He emphasized the importance of fundraising above all other factors.
The event in his honor was organized by the GW College Republicans.
“This is one of several events we’ve had reaching out to alumni,” said Chris Brooks, the organization’s chairman.
Should Morris be successful in both the primary and general elections, he will increase the number of GW graduates in Congress to 19.