Kelly’s bold SA presidential campaign may be unopposed
Student Association events rarely produce overwhelming turnouts and SA campaign events usually draw fewer spectators.
Yet, on Wednesday night in the classy Noble Room, tucked under Hendricks Chapel, Ryan Kelly announced his candidacy for president in the upcoming SA election in front of approximately 30 people. You can credit the turnout to the well-oiled campaign machine Kelly has assembled.
Jessie Fish is the manager of Kelly’s coalition that includes a six-person public relations staff and an eight-person think tank, which is responsible for generating fresh ideas and concepts for the campaign. Networking is also a priority. Kelly and company are attempting to secure the support of leaders from various campus organizations, including the African Student Union and University Union.
Beyond the typical Facebook campaigning, a Web site, voteforyan.org, will be launched. The campaign has already produced an assortment of professional-quality posters with the slogan, ‘Many students, many issues, only one leader.’
If you don’t know who Ryan Kelly is or what he looks like, give it two weeks and you will be bombarded with his campaign materials.
The disappointing reality is the effort being exerted by the Kelly campaign may be in vain. As of Sunday, no one beside Kelly had gathered the 500 signatures necessary to have their name on the ballot. Only three students had taken the paperwork necessary, and the deadline to file it is today.
It would be an embarrassment to the Syracuse University community if Kelly ran unopposed. Not only would the disengaged apathetic student body sacrifice its activity fee to one student, without a campaign, Kelly would not prove his worthiness to be president.
Regardless, Kelly is saying all the right things in his early campaign material. Harping on his experience as chief of staff under Wayne Horton, Kelly is highlighting the role he played and taking credit for the success SA has seen in recent months.
‘I have been fortunate to be involved as a major player in the two-year transformation of SA from a primarily financial body, to the pro-active body that truly represents the students’ interests,’ said Kelly during his kick-off speech.
Kelly has always been an advocate of SA putting on a tough facade with the administration and reiterated that student support is the best way for members of the assembly to gain leverage during negotiations. Yet, Kelly took a weak position on the Connective Corridor.
‘No matter your stance on the subject, the Connective Corridor is a reality that is coming to Syracuse University,’ Kelly said in his speech. ‘The best way to ensure that it benefits the students is to work with the University and the Community to promote student needs.’
Kelly is going to say all the things a candidate is expected to say for the next month. It is not yet apparent whether he really possesses some immortal skill at leading SA. But, his experience in a relatively successful SA will help his cause. If another candidate does materialize by tonight’s deadline, they will have their hands full, because he has organized a battle-ready campaign.
Matt Reilly is a featured columnist whose columns appear Mondays in The Daily Orange. Email him at email@example.com.
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