March 27, 2000

While many questioned his sanity and some questioned his logic, independent candidate Hideki Tsutsumi proved that getting to know as many voters as possible is perhaps the best way to win the Michigan Student Assembly presidency.

Yet, while he celebrated his victory, some members of the Wolverine Party spent the night in tears as the Central Student Judiciary disqualified them for due to illegal campaigning by the party”s campaign manager.

Tsutsumi, who has been campaigning since May 1999 by carrying a sandwich board around campus and giving impromptu speeches wherever students gathered, won the election with a total of 3,491 votes, beating out the disqualified Wolverine executive slate of Rory Diamond and Marcy Greenberger, who came in second. Blue Party candidates Glen Roe and Elise Erickson finished third, garnering a total of 1,028 votes.

“My one year of campaigning paid off. I thought it would happen, but not this big,” Tsutsumi said. “Four years ago I came to this country with the belief that I can be anything with hard work and determination. Today I realized this is true.

“A lot of people have told me its impossible to accomplish my platform, but one year ago nobody thought I could win. I believe I can accomplish anything with the support of students. I will work harder as president than I did campaigning,” he added.

Vice-presidential victor Jim Secreto said he had a feeling the duo would triumph, considering the feedback the two had received from students.

“I didn”t want to count my chickens before they hatched, but I felt really good about it. We”ve never had an international student or an independent candidate win the election,” Secreto said.

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