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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Stuart accuses Gerner of unethical election activity

    Steven Gerner
    Steven Gerner

    A former ASUA presidential candidate filed an elections complaint against various ASUA candidates last week after e-mails were sent to UA students encouraging them to vote for candidates that ASUA Sen. Steven Gerner and four other students support.

    The e-mails, which were sent during the primary elections, contained a link to a Web site that provides only the names of the candidates Gerner supports, said Anthony Stuart, a junior majoring in Spanish, who filed the complaint.

    Also on the Web site is a link that connects to Student Link, where students can vote. The ballot pops up right next to the list of candidates being supported, Stuart said.

    “”It was creative but unethically creative,”” Stuart said.

    Gerner, who is not seeking re-election, said the Web site technology was used to get more students to vote in an innovative and creative way.

    “”While we endorsed some candidates, our goals were not really for those candidates,”” Gerner said.

    Stuart said he knows of at least 25 people who received the e-mail from Gerner.

    “”This situation crossed a lot of ethical boundaries,”” Stuart said. “”It goes against UA privacy and is clearly bending the rules.””

    Gerner said e-mails were sent out to friends and acquaintances.

    “”If we felt like we had a connection to them, we sent it,”” Gerner said.

    Stuart said he has heard that votes can be changed through this kind of “”mirrored”” Web site because votes are not directly going through the Student Link site.

    “”I’m not the most tech-savvy guy,”” Stuart said. “”I’m not saying any votes were actually changed, but there’s a lot of room for fraudulent activity.””

    Stuart said he suspects numerous people made complaints about the Web site and the e-mails Gerner sent out.

    ASUA elections commissioner David Martinez III said he cannot confirm or deny if complaints were made.

    “”In the next two days, the commission is taking many measures to ensure the student voice is heard in electing the people (who) will represent them in ASUA,”” Martinez said. “”I wholeheartedly believe that we will end the election season more positively and on an extremely high note.””

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