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Thursday, August 11, 2022
The independent student publication of The Unversity at Buffalo, since 1950

SA Approves Single SA Presidential-Vice Presidential Ticket

Three constitutional amendments await only Oliver\'s approval


After weeks of languishing in the Student Association Assembly, the three proposed amendments to the SA Constitution finally reached the SA Senate's 21 members, who passed them Thursday night.

An amendment to eliminate required cabinet positions of director of student organizations and director of external affairs passed unanimously with one abstention, while an amendment to move the instatement date of new executive board members from April 1 to May 1 passed with no opposition.

The amendment requiring presidential and vice-presidential candidates to run on a single ticket faced a much more difficult battle before approval, however, with nine votes supporting the amendment and five in opposition.

According to SA Vice President Joshua Korman, the amendment is necessary because when the SA Constitution was written, "SA was a student government in the absolute most stereotypical sense of it" and since then, SA has "shifted into being more of an activities-based corporation."

As such, he believes presidents and vice presidents should run on the same ticket to ensure personal or political conflicts will not interfere with their duties and that time is not wasted while officers iron out their differences. Korman believes this procedure does not interfere with checks and balances, because all financial decisions made by the president and vice president must be approved by the treasurer and senate.

"The president bogging things down doesn't provide a check, all it provides is bureaucratic bullsh-," said Korman.

SA Senator Gregory Haynes, who is running for the New York State Student Assembly as an independent in this year's elections, does not believe that a president and vice president voted in on separate tickets are necessarily doomed to conflict with one another. He cited his campaign for senate as an independent candidate and the fact that once elected, he faced little difficulty working with the Rock Party, which had swept the remaining seats in the body.

In addition, Haynes noted how SA President Christian Oliver and Senator Rick Deren have had successful dealings with one another, despite running in opposing parties during last year's general SA election.

"If a president and vice president from two different parties can't sit down over a cup of coffee and iron out their differences . they shouldn't have been elected," said Haynes. "You have to believe that the people are going to vote for the most competent people."

Katie Walsh, secretary of the SA Assembly, thinks the academic year is too short for new e-board members to spend valuable time attempting to sort out their opposing agendas.

"[Officers] need to be doing the things they have already planned," said Walsh. "Every day that people need to get over their differences, no matter how big they may be . it's just another day that goes by they could be planning something better to do with their money."

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Senator Keith Mansfield was concerned that forcing students to vote for presidents and vice presidents together would limit student options and representation.

"[Candidates] should be good enough people to work things out," said Mansfield.

From a political standpoint, Korman said successful parties have candidates from a variety of backgrounds who are able to pull in a greater pool of voters.

"In order to win an election, you cannot have . a party that comes from the same background and completely represents the same thing," he said.

The amendments will now move forward for approval by Oliver. The first two amendments will take effect immediately after they are made official, but since this year's election process has already commenced, the amendment requiring presidents and vice presidents to run together will not take effect until the 2002-2003 academic year.




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