Engage triumphs over Revive in ASUN runoff election

By Riley Johnson, News Net Nebraska

The second time was the charm for Engage Party executives Eric Reznicek, Kaitlin Coziahr and Jeff Story.

Their victories in Tuesday night’s Association of Students of the University of Nebraska runoff election come just six days after finishing second to the Revive Party executive slate.

And Engage President Reznicek said though they’re tired, they’re thrilled with the outcome.

“We’re excited, we’re motivated, and we don’t take this opportunity lightly,” Reznicek said. “We’re ready to move forward.”

Engage beat Revive Party in both races by a margin of at least 20 percentage points in a runoff election where more than 16 percent of eligible students voted. That’s more than double the nearly 8 percent turnout of the 2010-2011 election. Officially, Reznicek and Coziahr beat Revive’s Zach Stull and Sierra Allen 62 percent to 38 percent in the president/internal vice president election. Story bested Revive’s Sam Adams in the external vice president race, 61 percent to 39 percent.

Reznicek credited continued efforts to reach out to voters on campus and the endorsement of the Sense for ASUN party, which received the least votes in the general election in the executive races.

He said Sense’s endorsement meant “extra bodies” to help campaign and a chance to reach out to a Sense’s voter base. In the president/internal vice president election last week, Sense received 1,275 votes, about 28 percent of all votes cast.

Stull congratulated the Engage executives on their win and thanked his supporters for turning out Tuesday.

He agreed that Sense’s endorsement was likely the difference in the election.

“That’s a pretty big factor, and obviously the numbers reflected it,” he said.

Revive spent the most on the election – more than $4,400 as of March 4, according to ASUN election filings. Engage had spent $2,800 in that same period.

“We knew we needed to have some type of advantage,” said Stull, whose party ran as ASUN outsiders with no senate experience.

They needed to “catch up with the 8 ball,” Stull said.

Still, Stull said he had no regrets looking back on his campaign.

He encouraged Engage to reach out to students and help people work together.

With a day off from class and a campaign season behind him, Stull said he’ll likely sleep till “midday.”

Reznicek, on the other hand, said he’s excited to assume his new duties as ASUN president. He will be inaugurated March 27.

“I just really want to get started,” he said.

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