The ASUSF Senate race is on, and this year three candidates are running for president, which may lead to a much more involved campaigning process than last year when current President Alex Platt, ran unopposed. This spring, Platt is running for reelection, along with opposing candidates Jon Coon and Bobby Marquez, who are currently off-campus representatives.
The increased competition may have sparked some of the candidates’ decisions to create websites to campaign for their positions. Coon and Platt both have websites which they are promoting with outlets such as Facebook and Twitter. Perhaps inspired by U.S. President Barack Obama’s innovative web campaign, the new online presence allows USF student voters to get to know and interact with their candidates more than a paper campaign flier would allow.
Platt’s website, PlattForPres.com, features sections with a biography, campaign promises for next year, and a blog on campaign updates. She uses a brightly colored logo and many photos from her various endeavors at USF, from working with USFtv, shooting a music video for Wyclef Jean, to posing on the set of the College Players’ production of the Vagina Monologues.
Coon’s website, WhoIsJonCoon.com, uses the campaign slogan “Who is Jon Coon?” to define himself as a student and candidate. Coon’s site includes a biography, an extensive description of why he is running for ASUSF president, a link to his personal blog where voters can learn more about him, and even videos for people to see him in action. Coon’s website and campaign is being run by successful nightclub promoter and USF junior Tom Roche.
Marquez took the traditional option of creating a Facebook group for which he lists the many organizations supporting him and list of his campaign promises, including an offer to spend $2,000 of his would-be stipend to host an event for USF students. The president’s total stipend is $7,000.
All of these online platforms allow USF voters to question and interact with their candidates. Maybe this spring’s elections, running April 23-27, will actually draw a voter turnout above last year’s ten percent.