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Gubernatorial candidate speaks to Up Close club

by Nicky Kaufman

United Independent Party gubernatorial candidate Evan Falchuk spoke after school to the Up Close club on Monday during X-block. Up Close, which was founded last year, focuses on local and state governments.

“We invited Falchuk because he is a politician from Newton who’s trying to make real change in the established system,” said senior Russell Petry, an officer.

Falchuk started by defining the United Independent Party, which he founded, as being,“socially pragmatic and fiscally sensible,” and a third option for the “many independent citizens of Massachusetts.”

He next discussed the fundraising disparities between his United Independent Party and the larger Democrat and Republican parties, saying that his party can only raise around $500 per person as opposed to the much more established parties that can raise up to $1,500. “Very often Democrats and Republicans cater to the donor, to the checkbook. I however, want to work and serve everyone from Massachusetts,” he said.

Falchuk moved on to stress fiscal responsibility to the students, saying, “$300,000 a year is spent on water bottles for the statehouse, I find that ridiculous.” Falchuk expressed to the class the need to eliminate unnecessary funding for things such as water bottles and to reallocate such funds for more deserving causes, such as schools.

Falchuk also talked about the importance of a personable campaign. “Too often, I see campaign signs for Democrats and Republicans at parades and rallies where the candidate isn’t actually there.” He stressed the need for candidates, especially ones running for local office, to travel around Massachusetts and interact with voters.

Before fielding questions, Falchuk talked about the national aspirations of his party and the independent movement party as a whole. He pointed to the success of current Maine Senator Angus King who won as an Independent for governor and remains independent as a senator, saying,“Someday soon hopefully, people like me won’t be seen as fringe third party candidates, but as a legitimate third party option.”

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