University Elections Committee Upholds Original Election Results
Controversy over the April 11 University Council elections was resolved Thursday night, when the UC Elections Committee ruled against former candidate Brendan Keane's request for a re-election.
Keane contested the results of the election on the grounds that the election had been inadequately publicized and that the online voting polls were not adequately reliable. Prior to the committee meeting, Keane had formally withdrawn from the election in a letter submitted to the office of Student Affairs, the various student governments and The Spectrum.
At Thursday's meeting, the Election Committee spent an hour and a half discussing whether the election was fair and, if not, whether to schedule another election.
"I was told what the rules were, I worked within them. I was frustrated by things that went on during what was supposed to be an election campaign and . it's the end of the semester, I'm not dealing with this," said David Vater Jr., the winner of the April 11 online elections.
"I did not agree to the online elections as it was put forward. If you don't have a voting place you are expecting people to go into computer labs and wait on long lines," said Keane. Janine Santiago, president of the Graduate Student Association, disagreed with Keane's reasoning.
"When you put booths in the Student Union and you campaign 50 feet before and you ask people to vote for you, you might get more votes because you're dragging people," said Santiago. "Most graduate students are not in the Student Union."
Oliver, however, supported the idea of rescheduling the election.
"The facts are I don't think students knew about the elections; I don't think they could have in an ideal world known about the elections," said Oliver.
Santiago and Oliver called into question an April 10 article published in The Spectrum, "Vater and Keane to Run for University Council Rep," which stated that the election had been rescheduled to take place April 25 and 26. Santiago said the e-mails she provided The Spectrum stated the GSA's support of a rescheduled election, rather than announcing the rescheduling.
After a closed door meeting, the committee voted against Keane's request for another election and allowed the original results to stand, leaving Vater the 2002-2003 student representative to the University Council.
" You can have every concern in the world about how the election is being run, because the bottom line is the election committee sets the rules, they set the guidelines on how the election is to be run," said Elizabeth Volz, Medical School Polity president. "If you don't agree with us, that's your opinion."