Republican budget-cutters plan to pare a program launched last year bySecretary of State Chet Culver, a rising star in democrat politics. Culver used 30-thousand dollars last year to start an “Iowa Student Political Awareness Club” and he meets with middle-school and high school students inperson or via the statewide Iowa Communications Network. Culver wants more20-thousand more dollars to run the program next academic year.But Representative Bob Brunkhorst, a republican from Waverly, says Culverwon’t get the extra dollars — and may even see a budget cut. Brunkhorstadmits the program’s popular — and may help Culver along in his politicalcareer.Culver brought 50 students from four central Iowa high schools to Des Moinesto a legislative committee meeting on the matter. Brittani Cobbley, aneighth grader at Southeast Polk, told lawmakers she likes the program.Cobbley, who supported George W. Bush in the Caucuses, says her parents arenot politically-involved, but she was during the club’s “mock caucus” inJanuary.One legislator asked the students if they knew who their representativeswere. None knew the answer.
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