This story was written by Erin Mulvaney, Daily Texan
A UT economics senior sparked the idea for an online program that allows Hillary Clinton supporters to trade in their loyalties.
After Sen. Clinton's resignation from the presidential race, Andre Nader, a BuildASign.com intern, introduced the idea for a promotional campaign that offers free Barack Obama signs to customers who send in their Hillary Clinton signs. Launched Friday, the program intends to consolidate support for the Democratic Party and to promote recycling.
The Austin-based online business normally sells the Obama signs for $27 but now offers them for free when a customer sends in a Clinton sign. The company also offers Obama signs for half-price when customers send proof that they have recycled a Clinton sign, said Natasha Fussell, a manager at BuildASign.com.
"It's a way to get our message across by using the excitement of the political arena to incorporate recycling, and possibly by stirring up controversy," Nader said.
He said the campaign is an attempt to elicit a response from the community and humorously comment on the political environment.
Fussell said the online business would like to remain bipartisan but also said that an incentive for launching the campaign is to attempt to unite the party and ensure the Clinton signs do not end up in landfills when they could be recycled.
"Hillary supporters may not be inclined to switch signs immediately," Nader said. "But this program may help the Democrats that supported Hillary to branch over."
Government junior Victoria Mery, a member of Students for Hillary Clinton, said she will not be turning in her "Hillary" sign but offers her support for Sen. Obama.
"I will be keeping my sign," Mery said. "There's something symbolic about the idea to just trade in one sign for the other. Anyone who followed the primaries this year would know that that's not the way it works. I'm still loyal to Hillary even though she's not in the race."