Team Unite, Vision Party vie for student votes

N-ASUU-Elections-high-quality Colby Patterson
To increase voter turnout ASUU will be handing out mugs this week. Photo by Brent Uberty.

To increase voter turnout ASUU will be handing out mugs this week. Photo by Brent Uberty.

Students have the chance to make their voices heard as voting for ASUU general elections began Monday.

The two parties running are Team Unite and the Vision Party, both of which are tabling in the Marriott Library Plaza this week, stopping students between classes to make sure they vote.

“We have encouraged all students to vote, regardless of their support for Team Unite,” said Mike Bird, the presidential candidate for Team Unite. “We believe that our platform resonates with students better than anyone else who is running, and we actually have what it takes to get it done.”

Justin Spangler, the presidential candidate for Vision Party, said their platform includes expanding sustainability efforts, embracing diversity and improving accessibility on campus.

“We just want the best party to win, the party that best represents what the students want,” Spangler said.

To further their sustainability plans, Spangler said the party has gained approval to install a recycling machine on campus that rewards students with points for going green. The points, Spangler said, can be collected to receive gift cards to iTunes or Subway. He said the U would be the 10th university to implement these type of machines and the first in both the West and the Pac-12.

Vision Party’s vice presidential candidate is Madison Black. The party’s senior class presidential candidate is Florence Fernandez, who ran with the Grow Party in the preliminary elections.

Team Unite’s platform is three-fold: engage, enhance and ensure.

Jean Kim, a Team Unite candidate and freshman in sociology, said her party is working on textbook reform. She said Team Unite has been working with departments to secure long-term contracts for books to ensure 80 percent buyback of textbooks purchased from the U’s bookstore.

Team Unite’s vice presidential candidate is Ashley Newhall, and their senior class presidential candidate is Tanner Olsen.

Chloe Jensen, a freshman in the Actor Training Program, said she has not heard anything about the ASUU elections. She said she does not plan on voting because she does not have her laptop.

Carter Bruett, a freshman in biology and Team Unite’s assembly candidate for the College of Science, believes it is important for every student to vote.

“Student government is actually something that affects you,” Bruett said. “You pay $23 in student fees, so why not select the people who will be spending that money for you?”

Harper Fleming, a sophomore in biology, said she would vote if she knew “what it was.”

Students can vote in the library plaza or online until 10 p.m. on Thursday.

k.johnson@chronicle.utah.edu