ESC: Election Drama! (& Other Exciting Things)
Written by Bwog Staff
- While Kathy Sun did beat out Akshay Shah for President of SEAS ’14 last Wednesday, she did not actually win the popular vote. In reality, Shah garnered more votes but did not win the election because his party, DemocraSEAS, violated certain election rules on flyering, and due to these violations, votes were taken away from the entire party, resulting in the Sun victory.
- However, according to Spec, “ESC is not allowed to take votes away from the entire party for the actions of one person,” and that happened to be the case this time. In a meeting last Friday between the two parties and the ESC Elections Board, a member of DemocraSEAS “honorably” stepped forward and claimed sole responsibility for the violations (full email from the Secretary of Elections below). Thus, even though his party still violated election laws, votes were restored to Shah, and the Presidential election was tied with a revote scheduled for this week. Shah owned up to the violations and told Spec that they were unintentional and the product of “miscommunication.”
- But wait! Before the revote could happen, Sun dropped out of the race, meaning Shah is now President of ESC 2014 by default. Sun told Spec that she thinks it is “ridiculous” that “there would be so much cheating” surrounding the election of a public servant and that she withdrew for “ideological reasons.” Hey, if this happened to us, we’d probably lose faith in the system as well (and give talks about the environment just to get back into the spotlight every once in a while).
Sean Zimmermann reports on further dramatic happenings of ESC last night:
- Alright, not that dramatic. Last night, ESC renamed “VP Internal” to “VP Communications.” The VP Communications will chair a new Communications Committee that will focus on outreach to the student body.
- “VP Intergroup” was also renamed “VP Finance.” Really, these are exciting times for ESC.
The full email from Carla Williams, ESC Secretary of Elections, on the election violations:
The members of DemocraSEAS challenged the Spring 2011 Elections Results for the 2014 Class Council on Wednesday 13th April, 2011. The Engineering Student Council Elections Board held a hearing between the two contesting parties: DemocraSEAS and FUtastic ’14 on Friday 15th April, 2011 at 6pm. The Board listened to a summary of the violations and reviewed the penalties that had been allotted to DemocraSEAS for various infractions. Due to the resubmission of multiple violations, the Board looked for unique instances that warranted the final penalty meted out to DemocraSEAS. During the hearing, one of the members of DemocraSEAS stepped forward and honorably accepted responsibility for the final violation that was committed. As such, the final penalty of the other party members was reduced, resulting in a tie in the race for 2014 Class Council President. The result of this tie will be decided by the Class of 2014 in an External Election to be carried out next week.
Inaccurate pictorial representation of Kathy Sun, SEAS ’14, via Wikimedia Commons