Anxious candidates for Student Government and their supporters gathered in the Marshall Student Center amphitheater on Friday afternoon to hear Election Rules Committee Supervisor Karim Hussein announce who the 53rd student body president-elect would be.
With 2,376 of the 4,441 votes casted in the election, William Warmke, and his running mate Scott Sandoval won the election against Taylor Lockwood and his running mate Ben Agosto, Hussein said.
Its a relief, Warmke said. It was definitely a close fight. I think both campaigns worked hard.
Agosto said he and Lockwood accepted the defeat, knowing that the student voices were heard with a difference of only about 300 votes.
It was really close I had no idea how close it was going to be, Agosto said.
Warmke said getting sleep was the first item on his agenda.
Sleep thats one thing I havent gotten much of, he said. After that its about transitioning (and) learning where the current administration is at, and picking up where they left off so we can take over in April.
Sandoval, Warmkes running mate, said he only had brief words to describe his feelings of winning.
Im glad, he said. I dont know what more to say than that.
Cassandra Castro, a freshman majoring in social work and one of the about 100 students in the crowd that gathered outside the Marshall Student Center, said she was excited to see Warmke win.
Castro said she lives on campus and that Warmke is her Resident Assistant in her dorm. She said she thinks Warmkes experience working with residents will help him in his upcoming role as student body president.
By seeing him as a leader (in housing), I can tell he will do a good job, Castro said.
Hussein also announced the design of the OUR shirt that won a white T-shirt with a golden bull on the front and that the first referendum question on the ballot passed while the second failed.
Hussein announced the referendum results as the results of a non-SG-affiliated referendum as students on campus, such as Castro, received an email signed by student body president Brian Goff, 15 minutes before the results were announced, stating the referendum would not be counted.
I was confused by what happened with the referendum, Castro said. I saw the email before hearing the results so I dont know what happened with that.
Sandoval expressed another result of the election, which went unnoticed by the crowd.
As the newly elected vice president of the executive branch, he said he will soon have to step down from his current position as senate president pro tempore.
Its going to be up to Student Government to figure out how to approach it, Sandoval said. Its never happened before. I guess this would be the first time it happens.
Jeff Gao, the current senate president, said Sandoval would not technically have to step down until his inauguration in April.
However, once Sandoval does resign, Gao said there is a procedure for senators to elect a new senator to the position.
It will have to go through an election processit will probably transition over the next week or two when Sandoval resigns, Gao said. Its not that pertinent. There is a set process for it and we have it taken care of.
Sandoval said he plans on resigning before his inauguration, but said he is confident there wont be any problems after the transition.