Although the leaders of Students First disbanded the party and many left to join Students 4 Michigan, the recent one-party domination of student government continued in this year’s elections.

The Students 4 Michigan party claimed 12 seats for the Michigan Student Assembly and 10 for other governing bodies. According to Election Director Brian Doughty, the Defend Affirmative Actioin Party won three seats total, all on MSA. Ten independent candidates also won MSA seats.

Between last Wednesday and Thursday, about 4,100 students voted in the Michigan Student Assembly elections. This number is down from the 5,598 students who voted in last fall’s election.

The drop in turnout is a result of the lack of two major opposing parties, said Doughty, an Engineering senior. But despite the decrease in turnout, party members were positive about the outcome of the election.

“I think we ran a very successful campaign,” said LSA sophomore Monica Woll, Students 4 Michigan campaign manager. “I think the student body did a great job in choosing qualified leaders who are ready to do work in student government,” she added, in response to criticism that has come against Students 4 Michigan candidates and platforms.

Critics have said Students 4 Michigan borrowed members and platform ideas from the now-defunct Students First.

Students 4 Michigan has a broad agenda, including increasing the number of academic minors, getting representation on the City Council and placing a student lobbyist in the state Legislature.

Although DAAP was able to pick up just three seats in this election, its members said they are not deterred from taking a firm stand on their party’s beliefs. “We were happy. … I think we will be able to do a lot,” said Rackham student Kate Stenvig, DAAP campaign manager. The party campaigned for nine seats.

“I feel like our leadership on MSA has been extremely important,” Stenvig said. She said regardless of how many seats DAAP has on MSA, it has been able to and will continue to make a difference.

One of DAAP’s major goals is to reverse the trend of decreasing undergraduate minority enrollment.

In a very close race, LSA junior Mike Forster was the only independent candidate to win a seat on for LSA-SG.

“It feels really good — I was really excited to see the results,” Forster said in response to winning. Forster added that he was glad to see that people vote for individuals, not just for parties.

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