As Race Opens, Council Tickets Vie for Votes

Candidates woo voters with fake money, pizza

The race is on.

Yesterday morning, at 12:01 a.m., the campaign for Undergraduate Council president began in a spray of soda, paint and colored posters.

Precisely at midnight, supporters of all five teams of candidates grabbed posters and began a mad dash through the Houses and Yard dorms, racing to cover bulletin boards first.

Following another early morning postering run in the Yard, many candidates ate breakfast in Annenberg Hall yesterday, making a first attempt at reaching the crucial first-year vote. The majority of voters in past elections have been first-year students.

Wearing a flag sweater, presidential candidate B. J. Averell '02 shared a bowl of Golden Grahams with a table full of first-years.

"I'm the golden boy of the UC," he explained.

A couple of tables away, candidate Justin A. Barkley '02 declared his first nine hours of campaigning a success.

"Today was good. We got out postering early and grabbed some good spots," he said.

Outside, in front of the Science Center, candidate Matthew Zanotelli '02 and his vice-presidential candidate John A. Bash '03 passed out campaign literature to students featuring the campaign slogan "More money. More food. More sex."

Yesterday's theme was more money, so Bash handed out small pieces of paper labeled "Bashcash."

Tomorrow and Friday will each have a different theme, he added. He declined to say what he'll pass out on "More food day" tomorrow or on "More sex day" on Friday.

Gusmorino and vice presidential candidate Sujean S. Lee '03 kicked off their campaign with a pizza party in Leverett House Sunday evening, explaining to nearly 40 volunteers the reasons for their campaign.

He also unveiled their website, capitalizing on the campaign theme of "We did it before, We'll do it again." The website involves full motion animation, sound and music.

Gusmorino's bright-orange posters sparked grumbling among rival campaigns, who complained his posters--the only posters that mentioned issues--claimed credit for achievements Gusmorino's ticket didn't do.

For instance, Barkley campaign manager Jeffrey A. Letalien '01 said, Gusmorino's posters claim he will bring The Roots to play on campus, Feb. 14, 2001--something that is already planned.

"Nothing on the council is ever done by one person," Gusmorino said.

"At this time of year, people claim credit for as much as they can," rival Stephen N. Smith '02 explained. "You can't get too picky about it."

After current president Fentrice D. Driskell '01 and vice-president John A. Burton '01 postered for him yesterday morning, Smith explained that, while supporting the accomplishments of the current administration, a Smith administration would be different from Driskell's..

"Our style and our experience are different," Smith said.

However, Letalien said he was glad to see Smith and Gusmorino linking themselves to the current council.

"If Paul and Steve want to fight over the UC's accomplishments this year, we're happy with that," he said. "There's nothing to fight over."

Barkley made his race official last night with a half-hour "campaign announcement" in the Eliot Junior Common Room.

Barkley and about 20 supporters were joined by his vice presidential candidate Adam M. Johnson '02, former presidential candidate Frank X. Leonard '01 and council finance committee Chair John P. Marshall '01.

"Failure and scandal have been the hallmark of this administration," Marshall said. "It's time for a change."