A group of students at Port Chester University decided to have a little fun on campus but ended up causing a real political quagmire. Students decided to start a campaign to get people to write-in the name Clancy Wiggum in the Sheriff election.Clancy Wiggum is the fictional police chief on the TV show “The Simpsons”. There is no such person. But Wiggum won the office of Sheriff. County election officials, the current sitting sheriff and many residents are rightfully upset.
County Clerk Elisabeth Hoover said this. “They made a mockery of the political system. A buffoon cartoon character gets elected to the highest Law Enforcement posting for our county. This seriously undermines the legitimacy of any election results.”
This election was a perfect storm of events that allowed for these results. First in the small county students at Port Chester University outnumber citizens who live off campus. In addition political science professors at the university were offering extra credit to students to vote in this non presidential election year. Lastly all students at this private liberal arts college are required to live in campus housing.
Students saw Vote Wiggum in every dorm hallway. It was viral on campus Facebook and Twitter feeds. Students even started to sell Vote Wiggum t-shirts. Classes and coffee shops were filled with people in Vote Wiggum shirts.
Some people off campus started to also pass along the Vote Wiggum message. Considering the incumbent Sheriff was running unchallenged there were no signs for his campaign.
Student voter turn out was close to a record turn out. The Wiggum write-in carried the vote in the district covered by the campus. Wiggum was also written in all over the county. In the end Wiggum had 235 more votes than the incumbent.
County officials are reviewing their options on how to proceed. The plan is to make an announcement after talking to county attorneys.