Alex Kaplan has removed himself from the Associated Students Inc. presidential race. Sarah Storelli will now run unopposed for the top spot in Cal Poly’s student government.
Kaplan, who had no prior experience in ASI, let race officials know Wednesday that he would not remain in the race.
After a profile of Kaplan ran in the Mustang Daily on Tuesday, the story got more than one hundred Web comments, almost all of which were critical of Kaplan and his platform.
Storelli said she was only half-shocked that Kapalan dropped out of the race.
“Some people were not taking his campaign as seriously as he would have liked,” she said.
Despite the fact that hers will be the only name on the ballot, Storelli says she will still try to reach out to students.
“I am a thousand percent planning on actively campaigning still,” she said. “I’m still acting like I’m running against the best possible opponent.”
A debate between the two candidates was scheduled for the University Union hour, but will now be turned into a discussion between Storelli and students, said Kelsey Rice, chair of the elections committee.
“The purpose of the debates is for students to engage with candidates in order to get to know them better,” Rice said. “Just because there is only one candidate doesn’t mean that the purpose has changed.”
Rice said she was not aware of any other ASI presidential race when a candidate ran unopposed.
Storelli said she expects voter turnout to remain high because of the ASI Board of Directors election and because of the possibility of a write-in candidate.
She also said she has already talked to several dozen organizations on campus and expects her support to be substantial, despite the lack of competition.
Storelli’s platform is focused on safety, diversity, community relations, legislative affairs and sustainability.
While there is a possibility that she could be beaten by a write-in candidate, Storelli said she’s not planning on losing.
When contacted by the Mustang Daily, Alex Kaplan declined to comment.