The TLP Guide to Rigging a University Election

October 16, 20213 minute read

How often have you been following a YUSU election, only for your least favourite candidate to win? Maybe they’re completely unqualified for the job, or have no idea what they’re doing and have made wild and unachievable policies, and you’ve been burned by supporting a rival candidate. Well here’s the deal, if you’re really after sway you’ve got to do more than just casting your ballot. But why not take peaceful political action through democratic campaigning, speaking to students, and leafleting the shit out of campus, I hear you cry. Have you ever met the students who support the bad candidates? They’re mad, I tell you, completely bonkers, so you, the wise self-appointed philosopher king of campus, have to take matters into your own hands, and we’ve compiled our top tips on how to topple your opponents when they next come down the line.

First of all, you need campaign funds. There’s absolutely no limit as to how many people can stand in an election, or to how seriously they’re forced to take it, so for this ruse you’ll need as many people as you can to get in on the deal, ideally within a media group or public facing society. Then you all need to spend your entire YUSU pittance moneys on advertising and sponsorship, maybe you’ve got an insider in the group and they will let candidates sponsor individual letters to ensure there’s no limit to how many nominal backers you can get on a single page. If you get 30 people to cough up £30 budget, YUSU is obliged to give £900 to whatever group you got in on it. Maybe they get a nominal conmvenience fee, and then use collected shopping receipts to take out the money from YUSU finance to nab it into private accounts which then can be put into the campaign.

You have to be able to take advantage of a situation as well. Opportunities are created but also occasionally presented and you will lose if you don’t take up on them. For example, each voter has a login for an account they would use to vote with. If you were to… know those details, you quite literally control a larger voting block. It would be unethical for you to use computer trickery to try and source this information, but if a student hands it out? Well it’s your duty to use it. Of course, students would have to be mad to hand that out, and candidates even more so.

Finally, the key to winning any campus election is shameless shameless self promotion. Lecture shoutouts aren’t enough anymore, you’ve got to shout at Greg’s Place, or better yet, from the top of central hall. Get more attention by standing on the very edge, crying and weeping. If your election run coincides with a local election, make sure to stand as a candidate there to get your sweet freepost across York. Break into students kitchens in the night to surprise them at breakfast time, canvas the private accommodation centers with leaflets in mandarin and cantanese. This is where your creativity can really take off, but be careful, this is where there’s the most opportunity for complaints to be lodged against you, so apply your self-promotion wisely. And if you follow all these tips, you’re a shoe in to get an underpaid overworked position that makes you as cool as prod rock and adds a tumour to your CV.

Harry Clay

Lemon Press

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