After sweeping A.S. elections Thursday night, Campus United remains dominant for its second year as a campus political party.
The party won all executive seats except for one — a nonpartisan student advocate general. Students elected 16 Campus United candidates and 9 candidates from the newly formed Isla Vista Party to A.S. Senate.
This year is the second year in a row that Campus United has secured four of the five executive seats and 16 seats on A.S. Senate.
A.S. Elections Board officials said 7,220 students turned out to vote this week, accounting for nearly 36 percent of the undergraduate student body.
“I look forward to getting ready to go and finding competent staff in my office so we can go into next year strong.” — Hieu Le, A.S. UCSB President 2017-18
Hieu Le of Campus United will be A.S. president next year. Le believes he was elected because he has experience and a “vision for the university,” and he said he is excited to start laying the foundation for his term.
“My first order of business is to hold myself up and study for midterms and get this quarter straightened out first,” he said. “As president, I look forward to getting ready to go and finding competent staff in my office so we can go into next year strong.”
Write-in candidate Navpreet Khabra, who joined the presidential race four days before election, congratulated Le and said she hopes he will spend his time utilizing his lobbying experience for A.S.
She said Le should also focus on working in the many different parts of A.S., rather than just the executive and legislative positions.
Nawar Nemeh, the Isla Vista Party candidate for A.S. president, declined to comment.
Campus United candidate Jasmine Sandhu won the race for internal vice president, beating opponent Lesly Silva who suspended her campaign last Friday. Sandhu said she is excited to work with the new senators and help them prepare for their new positions.
“I think that [students] know that I was the best person to fill this position and be able to fulfill these duties and really empower my senators to complete their duties properly,” she said. “I think that’s why I won; I think the student body knew this.”
Campus United’s Batsheva Stoll won election as external vice president of local affairs (EVPLA). She said her first priority will be to better Isla Vista.
“I’ve seen how great Isla Vista can be; I’ve seen its flaws,” she said. “I want to channel that so that Isla Vista can be the best it can be.”
Justice Dumlao, who ran for EVPLA with the Isla Vista Party, said he was proud of Stoll and hopes to work with her more in A.S. He added he would like to see a lot of “coalition building,” community building and communication from Stoll.
“That was a big problem last year with Senate in general and A.S. in general, really,” he said. “I really hope that communication stays within the forefront of everyone’s minds next year because it’s an extremely important thing to have in our community.”
Kristin Hsu of Campus United won the race for external vice president of statewide affairs (EVPSA). She wanted to thank everyone in Campus United and her mentor, Matthew Santos.
She also thanked former EVPSA Melvin Singh, who first made her a fellow in his office over two years ago. Hsu said her first order of business will be “sleep.”
Despite emotions running high, Menelik Dagnachew, Isla Vista Party candidate for EVPSA remained positive. He said he will remain fighting on behalf of students, especially in his new position as the undergraduate student representative to the Mental Health Oversight Committee within the UC Office of the President.
“I’m proud of every single one of those candidates because they put in so much work,” he said. “It’s a great coalition of people we’ve got, and I’ve got a family. I’ve got people to work with, so I’m happy.”
Jack Tannenbaum, the independent candidate who was unopposed in his bid for student advocate general, was also in good spirits after his victory.
“I may have been the only option on the ballot, but 75 percent of people who entered the ballot still chose to vote for me when they had the option not to,” he said. “I’m going to go home, hug everyone who has been on my team, hug everyone who has worked with me, congratulate everyone else who’s run; you know, win or lose they have done an excellent job.”
Profiles of all 51 A.S. candidates can be found here.
Parry Dong and Victoria Gurrola contributed reporting.