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Defeated candidates reflect on campaign, look ahead

Becky Hogan | Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Four of the six tickets vying for Notre Dame student body president and vice president left the campaign trail after being defeated in the primary Monday.

The top two tickets – Bob Reish and Grant Schmidt and Maris Braun and George Chamberlain – will compete in a run-off Thursday.

Juniors Bill Ehrlich and Michael Roscitt placed third overall with 531 votes, or 13.75 percent of the total votes.

Ehrlich and Roscitt’s campaign reflected their laid back approach to student government

“I think we achieved the goals of our campaign,” Roscitt said. “We wanted to shake it up.”

Though Ehrlich said he was surprised with the results of the election, he admitted he was going to be surprised whether they won or lost.

“It’s just like when you take a test and you think you either got 100 or failed,” he said. “You’re just happy to get it back.”

Ehrlich and Roscitt agreed they would not have changed anything about their campaign.

“[The election] was up to the people, and that’s the way it should be, although [the results] do say something about the student body,” Ehrlich said.

Juniors Peter Kelly and Jon Poelhuis received 242 votes to capture 6.27 percent of the total.

Their platform included instituting a free shuttle bus to take students off-campus and screening Student Union Board movies on weekdays.

“We definitely didn’t want to be overly serious,” Kelly said. “We had serious ideas, but we maintained our sense of humor.”

Poelhuis said he was surprised by the level of voter-turnout.

“I’m surprised by the number of people who didn’t vote,” he said. “Most people didn’t even know [the election] was today.”

Freshmen Cooper Howes and Daniel Rimkus received 2.51 percent of the student body’s votes, but they were more surprised with the 5.08 percent of students who abstained.

Howes, like most of the losing candidates, does not plan to take his student government ambitions further, though Rimkus said he might continue to “dabble.”

Howes and Rimkus said they have no regrets about their campaign.

“You’ve got to go big or go home,” Rimkus said. “And we’re going home.”

Sophomores Rick Hollowood and Alex Tomala, who received 1.53 percent of the votes, said they thought they did well for not having run a campaign.

Hollowood said he was not surprised by the election results, but he plans to join the race again next year.

Although Hollowood is out of the race for the executive office, he said he hopes the winning candidates will accomplish the top priority of his campaign.

“We hope winning candidates will take up the better toilet paper issue,” Hollowood said.