Exactly five weeks after SGA election campaigning began, The Tennessee Way dropped out of the race.
The campaign, which featured Jack Huddleston as presidential candidate, Makela Downey as vice presidential candidate and Logan Craft as student services director candidate, confirmed its departure from the election Wednesday night in a statement on its social media accounts.
The withdrawal comes amidst a case about possible outside influences, but the team withdrew Wednesday morning, the day of the hearing concerning the situation.
“It is with heavy hearts and great sadness that we announce that we are suspending our campaign effective immediately,” the statement read. “We hold ourselves to the highest standards of honor and integrity. We want to thank our amazing supporters for their enthusiasm and their belief in us.
“Never forget the importance of standing up for what you believe in. Tennessee Values are worth fighting for.”
Huddleston declined to comment further besides clarifying that the campaign left the race on its own free will and wasn't disqualified.
Made up of 'outsiders'
During its run, The Tennessee Way promoted itself extensively as a campaign made up of “outsiders.” Huddleston, junior studying finance, and Downey, sophomore studying supply chain management, had not previously served in SGA, while Craft, junior studying political science, had only been involved for a short time.
“We see things from the outside that just common folks see that are wrong and we think that you can’t solve a problem with the same people that created it,” Huddleston told The Daily Beacon in an interview last week. “You have to bring in somebody new, fresh faces, fresh ideas, to get problems solved and to get things moving again.”
The goals that Huddleston, Downey and Craft hoped to accomplish if elected included adding more transparency to SGA's monetary reports, creating an opt-out feature for student fees for the Student Health Center and increasing security at certain spots on campus.
They also wanted to enact an “Aware Policy” to combat sexual assault, work to help students have more access to affordable medication and providing a shuttle bus to sorority village and the visitor's center during game days.
“I think that’s one thing that I hope people notice about us is that we’re trying,” Downey told The Daily Beacon. “We’re trying to be those outside people that come in and try to have a voice inside of student government.”