Elections kick off in the cold

H Street buzzed with activity Wednesday morning as candidates and their supporters handed out material in hopes of winning the support of students in the Student Association elections.

Candidates positioned themselves in front of Kogan Plaza and across the street near the Crawford and Schenley residence halls, handing out cookies, hot chocolate, lollipops and palm cards.

“We are looking to make history,” said SA Sen. OG Oyiborhoro (CCAS-U), who is running a write-in candidacy for president.

Oyiborhoro, a junior, spent most of Wednesday on top of a U-Haul truck playing music to attract attention to his campaign.

“As a write-in candidate, you gotta go big,” Oyiborhoro said.

Temperatures were between 30 and 40 degrees on Wednesday and winds reached 30 miles per hour, but the weather did not stop some candidates from dressing like it was spring.

SA Sen. Nick Polk (FY-NV), a freshman who is running for senate with the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, wore flip-flops as he handed out cookies to students passing by Kogan Plaza.

“I can’t feel my toes,” said Polk,. The campaign activity going on around him could be described as “uniquely GW,” he said.

Other candidates used clever phrases to encourage students to vote for them as well.

At-large senate candidate Rob Lockwood, a junior with bright red hair, handed out red palm cards with his campaign phrase, “A Ginger?” across the top.

“I have been out here since 6:30 this morning,” Lockwood said. “I have been handing out lollipops, handing out palm cards, smiling, kissing babies, shaking hands and doing what a politician should be doing.”

Presidential candidate Sen. Vishal Aswani (SEAS-U), a junior, also joked around with his campaign material. He used innuendo on the palm cards he handed out to students with the phrase, “V-Card” on the back, to illustrate the many V’s in Aswani’s campaign platform.

“The v’s stand for vote for Vishal,” said sophomore Greta Twombly, a member of Aswani’s campaign. “(Vishal) got a kick out of it. When we were dorm-storming people looked at the card like, ‘oh this is funny!’ and kept it on their desk rather than throwing it away.”

Junior Ben Balter, chair of the Joint Elections Committee, said the election is going well so far.

“We could not be happier with the way things have been going,” Balter said. “Elections are the highlight of the semester for a lot of students. It is the one time of the year when, at the center of our county’s most political city, our campus explodes with a unique electoral buzz unseen elsewhere.”

With the addition of online voting this year, Balter and the JEC have a unique situation on their hands.

“Obviously with any new system there will be a few hiccups along the way, but the committee has been staffing the office throughout the day and have been handling the relatively few issues promptly,” Balter said. “Most commonly, we’re actually seeing students who are confused with how simple the process is.”

Students can vote online until 9 p.m. Thursday night.

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