One or more saboteurs have allegedly been wreaking havoc on several Associated Students of CSU presidential candidates’ campaigns.
The most costly damage has fallen on the shoulders of Cord Brundage and Melissa Snow, presidential and vice presidential candidates, respectively, in the upcoming election. Brundage estimated that he and Snow have experienced about $100 in lost and damaged merchandise.
An unknown offender poured green paint in a box of Brundage and Snow’s property Sunday morning, ruining around 60 T-shirts with the duo’s slogan printed on them, Snow said. The box had been stored in Durward Hall.
“This is the fourth election I’ve been in and I’ve never seen anything like this,” Snow said.
Brundage and Snow also hung professionally printed banners around campus promoting their campaign. Not only did someone rip their signs down, but the person or persons also wrote offensive comments about the candidates on classroom white boards.
“I know anyone who talks to me will realize I’m the best candidate,” Snow said. “But it’s just frustrating.”
Brundage said he hopes voters will look past the campaign materials and focus on the candidates’ ideas.
“Elections should not be about stuff, they should be about ideas,” Brundage said. “The thing I hope the campus looks for is the ideas (of the candidates.)”
The CSU Police Department’s acting patrol lieutenant, John Higney, said someone filed a report of a political banner being taken off a wall. The police have classified the incident as theft.
“Whether something is considered theft or not depends on the person’s intentions,” Higney said. “You have to take property that doesn’t belong to you with the intentions of depriving the other person of its use, or to keep it for yourself.”
Since the missing banners were hanging in a public place, Higney said it is hard to determine whether they were blown down, stolen or “crumpled up and thrown away.”
Although no one filed a police report about the paint-soaked shirts, Higney said this act also depends on the intentions of the person responsible for it. If someone accidentally spilled the paint into the box, the police would not consider it a crime. But if they investigate the situation and find someone did it on purpose, police would probably consider it criminal mischief, Higney said.
Six campaign duos are running for ASCSU president and vice president.
Another pair of candidates, Jesse Lauchner and Katie Clausen, have noticed their campaign banners and signs disappearing as well.
“That’s why we’re trying a different approach,” Clausen said, referring to the flowers she and her assistants were handing out to passersby.
“It’s really devastating when you put your heart and soul into something and someone destroys it,” she said. “I can’t imagine how (Brundage and Snow) must feel about their shirts. I wish we knew who it was, and I wish they would apologize.”
Brendan Burns and Joe Marshall, another team of candidates, composed a pledge for every candidate to sign on the first day of the campaign. The pledge detailed a code of ethics that the candidates read, signed and agreed to follow, Marshall said.
“We had all the other candidates sign the pledge to kind of even the playing field,” Marshall said. “But if our signs get ripped down, then so be it.”