Patrick Cines and Michael Straw announced today they are running a write-in campaign for President and Vice President of UPUA’s 11th assembly, respectively. Those who are following along know the two are entering quite an acrimonious race, but that’s just the reason the candidates feel the need to get involved.
“We’re just a pair of political outsiders who will not submit to the status quo,” their campaign website reads.
You may recognize Cines, a marketing major, from his recent TEDxPSU talk, his campaign to “Stand Up to Altria,” or Innoblue, but he has never been a part of UPUA. Straw, a double-major in political science and economics, currently serves as the Legislative Director for UPUA and is also officially filed as a candidate running for an At-Large Rep. position.
The Cines/Straw campaign website greets visitors with the phrase “Dark Times” and a video of a queen chess piece knocking over a king, playing behind the statement “A dark cloud has been cast over the UPUA political establishment at this university.”
Cines and Straw also include this video explaining their campaign and why they chose to make a bid for UPUA.
“Patrick and I are not doing this for our resumes. We are not doing this for power or control,” Straw says in the video. “We are running because we believe you deserve better than what you are being given.”
Cines and Straw said they first considered running when the Underground article containing the leaked GroupMe messages was published after a friend of Cines’ reached out to say he should consider a campaign.
“When the news of what the campaigns have been doing, I was shocked and I knew that I had to take a stand,” Cines said in a message to Onward State. “I don’t believe that the values that were displayed by them are what we as a university stand for.”
Running a write-in campaign is more difficult than being on the ballot in that voters have to actively add the ticket’s name when they vote. To combat this, Cines and Straw plan to reach out to organizations that they believe don’t typically deal with UPUA. Cines cited Innoblue as an example.
The Cines/Straw ticket has one week to get its name and platform out to the student body as voting begins next Wednesday, March 30, at 6 a.m. As always, you can read our disclaimer regarding the 2016 UPUA election here, and come next week you can vote here.