Glazer, Capp Run on Experience

Tiffany Y. Wu

MATT J. GLAZER '06

Matthew J. Glazer ’06 and Clay T. Capp ’06 are sitting down to eat, a rare occurrence during their campaign to lead the next Undergraduate Council, a commitment that often excludes the possibility of lunch or sleeping for more than three hours a night.

But then again, they are being interviewed about their campaign.

Since the campaign’s start, the two rise every morning at 7:30 to meet with campaign manager Andrew H. Golis ’06 over breakfast to get a typed itinerary for the day.

“I wake up in the morning and ask Andrew, ‘Hey, what am I doing today?’” Glazer says with a smile that betrays his enthusiasm for the rigorous campaigning.

“I haven’t been going to class,” says Glazer, a government and pre-med concentrator, of his new schedule, as Capp nods in agreement.

“But I often don’t go to class, so it’s not so special,” Capp adds in his joking manner.

The pair spend their days campaigning outside of the Science Center and their nights canvassing in campus dorms, while fitting in conferences with student groups from which they seek endorsements. So far, the ticket enjoys strong council support and has been endorsed by groups like the Harvard College Democrats, the Harvard Aids Coalition and the Native Americans at Harvard College.

In their campaign, Glazer and Capp—the current chair of the Student Affairs Committee (SAC) and council treasurer, respectively—are billing themselves as the most experienced and capable of the candidates vying for the council leadership. They say their insider status is a strength that will allow them to accomplish campaign promises, and not a weakness, as their opponents have claimed.

KNOCK, KNOCK

Opponents of Glazer and Clapp accuse the campaign and council leadership for being “insular and out of touch,” a criticism launched on the website of presidential and vice presidential candidates Tracy “Ty” Moore ’06 and Ian W. Nichols ’06.

“That is a really bogus assertion,” says Glazer with unusual force. “Clay and I are students, too. We don’t live in a UC bubble. We go to classes, have friends, go to parties.”

Golis, who has been Glazer’s roommate since they were freshmen in Hurlbut, describes Glazer as “kind of a funny combination—he’s really intense and serious, but also hilariously sarcastic.”

In contrast, he characterizes Capp, a Tennessee native, as more of a party guy, known among council members as “the Beer Baron.”

The two runningmates, who forged a friendship freshman year watching an episode of the “Simpsons” on Capp’s computer in a “totally disorganized” government section, present a united front to supporters as well as detractors.

The pair’s top priorities—high on every ticket’s platform—include lobbying to alleviate the “crisis” in student space, organizing a cohesive student voice for the upcoming curricular review and streamlining the council’s grant process for student groups.

Glazer and Capp discuss these issues with an ease honed by going door-to-door for three to four hours each night canvassing students.

Capp says he has almost has too much fun in the freshman dorms, where he campaigns. “I signed some guy’s chest and played some beirut,” Capp says, adding that he likes crashing study breaks and reciting lines from “Family Guy” during his visits.

Glazer, who campaigns mostly in the Houses, calls the response “incredible,” and has also encountered some strange situations on the campaign trail. He says in Currier House he walked in on three people in bed together.

“They actually asked if we wanted to get in, but I said it didn’t look like there’d be any room,” says Glazer, who talked with them for 10 minutes.

TRACK RECORD

In dorm rooms, in front of the Science Center and on the streets, Glazer and Capp have proclaimed that they can get their agenda accomplished despite a sometimes unresponsive College administration.

As SAC chair, Glazer helped shepherd bills through University Hall, including ones that provided universal keycard access and blue light phones in Cambridge Commons. Capp, the current council treasurer, drafted the bill for this fall’s series of financial reforms after the council bounced last semester checks that totaled about $30,000.

“Matt and Clay have got the track record for actually being able to get it done,” says Matthew R. Greenfield ’08, a current council representative who is working on their campaign. “I don’t know any other two people in the University who will be able to implement reforms and address student needs the way Matt and Clay can.”

And Glazer and Capp themselves tout their experience over their opponents.

“Teo [P. Nicolais ’06, another presidential candidate] and Ty do have good ideas, but I think it was pretty clear from the questions of the panelists and their answers that they don’t really know how to get it done,” Glazer says in reference to last Thursday’s debate among the candidates.

While few deny Glazer and Capp’s experience, some say the council needs a breath of fresh air. Joshua A. Barro ’05, a former Finance Committee chair, says “I think it’s Mahan-Blickstead all over again.”

Barro, who was a presidential candidate in last year’s race, has criticized Council President Matthew W. Mahan ’05 and Council Vice President Michael R. Blickstead ’05 for their micromanagement and resigned from the council last year, citing the council’s fractious atmosphere and its support of the termbill increase.

Glazer and Capp say while they have worked closely with Mahan and Blickstead because of their jobs on the council, they are different from the current council leaders.

“Clay and I respect Matt and Mike but we disagree with them on a lot of things they’ve done,” says Glazer.

“There’s a tendency for unilateralism on the council,” says Capp, who promises to get everyone in the council more involved.

“We’re not trying to distance ourselves,” says Capp. “We’re just trying to make them understand the distance that was already there.”

THE ONLINE RACE

Glazer and Capp say they have focused on getting their message out—not only through personal campaigning, but online.

This year, the campaign battleground has extended to the internet, where all three tickets have established websites and formed groups on thefacebook.com. On the facebook, the Glazer-Capp group had 410 members as of yesterday afternoon, placing them second behind Moore and Nichols in terms of online fans.

“There’s sort of competition about the group membership,” Capp says with a shrug. “A lot of the groups have dual membership. I feel like if you get invited to join a group, you don’t want to say no.”

Dual membership refers to students who support more than one ticket on the facebook.

But the internet has also caused some problems for the group. Glazer and Capp’s campaign was fined a total of $30 following last night’s Election Commission meeting—$25 of that was for a link on the campaign website to a video that a campaign member shot of last Thursday’s presidential debate. The video was filmed using an unexpensed camcorder. “We don’t feel a camcorder is available to every student. The $25 expenditure of renting a camcorder for a day needs to be listed as an expense,” says Election Commission Chair Jon D. Einkhauf ’06.

But Glazer says his campaign will contest the ruling. “We will appeal to them [Election Commission] immediately and explain why this good is freely available,” Glazer says. “We’ve been very good at budgeting, so we do have a ot of money left, but we would want to use this money.”

Personal facts about Glazer’s haircare and Capp’s eating contest victory are also documented—along with their platform—on the ticket’s website, www.glazercapp.com, which they encourage all students to visit. Even with the website, Glazer and Capp bemoan not being able to reach to everyone.

When asked what is the one thing they wish they could do, but can’t, Capp replies, “I’d say talk to every single person and we’re trying, but to reach 6,500 students in 10 days is not feasible.”