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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    The results are in

    From left, ASUA Senator Emily Fritze and Charles Woolin, ASUA Media Director and Nagatas campaign manager, congratulate Chris Nagata on his victory in the ASUA presidential election in the Kiva room of the SUMC on Wednesday night.
    From left, ASUA Senator Emily Fritze and Charles Woolin, ASUA Media Director and Nagata’s campaign manager, congratulate Chris Nagata on his victory in the ASUA presidential election in the Kiva room of the SUMC on Wednesday night.

    Freshmen ASUA Senate candidates Sarah Bratt and Ryan Klenke both cried Wednesday night in the Kiva Room of the Student Union Memorial Center – she celebrating her standing as the final senator-elect; he mourning 11th place.

    Like two sides of a coin, Bratt leaned over and clutched her boyfriend and campaign manager while Klenke buried his head in his hands.

    “”I was kind of just accepting the fact (that I was going to lose), thinking about who I’m going to congratulate, and then when (Elections Commissioner Kenny Ho) said my name, I just – “” Bratt said, visibly holding back tears. “”It was an amazing moment. I’m so happy right now.””

    The highest vote-getter to not crack the top 10 for Senate-elect spots in the Associated Students of the University of Arizona general elections, Klenke said that he was not disappointed – that the results just showed the political science major he was meant to take a different path.

    “”Honestly, it’s not like I’m going anywhere,”” he said. “”It was devastating at first, but now looking back, it’s that I’m supposed to be somewhere else.””

    Bratt edged Klenke by 109 votes – less than half a percent of the total number of 4,752 votes cast.

    The battle for the presidency was not as narrowly contested, with physiology junior Chris Nagata handily defeating challenger Shane Cathers, a journalism junior, by over 2,000 votes.

    Making the rounds with countless hugs and handshakes, the normally fluid Nagata was held almost speechless, only able to mutter a few words.

    “”I’m just thrilled,”” said Nagata, whose campaign captured two-thirds of the vote. “”Against all odds, we – we prevailed.””

    ASUA and Elections Commission officials all said they could not recall a time when a write-in candidate won an executive position.

    Each running unopposed, Sen. Gabby Ziccarelli secured the position of administrative vice president, while Sen. Emily Fritze punched her spot as executive vice president.

    While friends and colleagues mobbed Nagata in celebration, Cathers stood at the side of the room watching.

    Slowly, ASUA officials made their way over to the student government outsider to shake his hand.

    “”I’m a little shocked at the difference in votes. I thought it’d be a lot closer,”” Cathers said. “”Anybody can work hard and strive for what they get. They’re not always going to get paid off, but it’s really the experience that counts.””

    A sixth-place candidate in the primary elections just one week ago, pre-business freshman James Brooks rode a wave of campaigning to the top spot last night, capturing over 1,500 votes.

    “”It feels so good; it feels so good,”” he said. “”I reached out there. I heard different perspectives.””

    Sen. Stephen Wallace, the only current member of the Senate to seek re-election, snuck in for the number eight spot.

    “”I was very nervous at the start, but it all worked out for the best,”” he said. “”I couldn’t have asked for anything else.””

    The night was also a nostalgic one for ASUA President Tommy Bruce, as it brought him back to the election nights he participated in as a presidential candidate. Slowly but surely, it is starting to hit the two-term president that he will soon leave the UA and the student government, with a new crop of young senators and executives poised to take over.

    “”It definitely brings in the flashbacks,”” Bruce said. “”I think it will really hit me at Inauguration (in May).””

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