The days of chalking, button making and passing out flyers came to an end Thursday night when incumbents Mike Griffin and Dave Mincberg were elected as the 2002-03 student body president and vice president, respectively.
Griffin and Mincberg received 1,250 of the 1,679 total votes. Their opponents Joe Nirenberg and Lakia Stewart received 408 votes. This year’s total did not surpass last year’s runoff total of 1,646.
The number of votes each ticket received did not add up to the total amount of votes because not everyone voted for student body president and vice president.
Loud screams and hoots echoed in Marshall Center Room 270 when Tammi Wilson, supervisor of elections for the Election Rules Committee, read the results. Griffin and Mincberg supporters applauded to congratulate the re-elected pair. Griffin even threw Mincberg around as the announcement was made.
After the excitement subsided, the crowd requested a speech from Griffin and Mincberg. Mincberg was the first to take the podium.
“I wish nothing but the best for Joe and Lakia,” Mincberg said. “This is really a victory for us. I believe that Tyvi Small had the record of 937 votes; we have taken it to a new level.”
David Armstrong, Student Government business manager, said he doesn’t really know if this is the first time in SG history a ticket received more than a 1,000 votes.
“This is the first year in a while that we have not had a runoff,” Armstrong said. “If you compare the numbers to last year’s runoff, they are definitely higher.”
Mincberg said the reason for the increase and for his and Griffin’s victory was because of all the people who supported them and helped out with the campaign. Mincberg hugged and kissed his family members who attended and said they are his inspiration for doing what he does.
“It was nice to have my grandparents here to support me and to hug them after the announcement,” Mincberg said. “I also want to thank Mike for allowing me to run with (him). And I am happy we don’t have to go through this (campaigning) again,”
Griffin said this year’s election was definitely about the issues at the university instead of personal issues.
“I think that last year’s campaign got really personal,” Griffin said. “That shouldn’t happen. It should be about the issues, and I have a lot of respect for our opposition.”
Griffin and Mincberg said they definitely want to sit down with Nirenberg and Stewart and discuss the issues brought up while
“We were never really against each other. It was more like a different outlook on how USF should be,” Griffin said.
Griffin ended his speech by saying he thinks some administrators don’t really like him, but he is sick and tired of a lot things.
“I hope you can embrace us. We want to do a lot of things different next year,” Griffin said. “We want to make things happen like we did this year and come together with a common goal for a better USF.”
Nirenberg said that he is disappointed, but overall he would have liked to have seen a better voter turnout.
Stewart said she doesn’t really think of this election as a loss.
“All the issues have been raised now and hopefully will be addressed,” Stewart said. “(Griffin and Mincberg) do deserve a congratulations, and they did get a lot of people to vote.”
Stewart said she will be happy to see all the issues be brought up and have the student body well-represented as a whole.
“I will say that it is not easy losing, though,” Stewart said.Freshman C.J. Schurman said she voted for Griffin and Mincberg because they have good leadership skills.
“Mike grew up in the Leadership House, and that is where I live, and that is the key to their success,” Schurman said.
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