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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

ASUA facilitates elections

ASUA debated the new election code, which allows students to campaign together and lower the signature requirements to expand candidate pool. It was one of several issues touched on at their weekly meeting.

“”After long nights and long hours, lots of committee hours, the elections code is finally ready,”” said Michael Colletti, the Associated Students of the University of Arizona elections commissioner. “”Some of these changes might be pretty monumental but change is good. I think change is good for ASUA.””

Three large points of contention arose during discussion: lowering of signature requirements, candidates running on slates and how to levy punishments for code violations.

“”The impact of monumental change is 1) It formalizes processes that already happen and 2) I think it will create a more open and a more diverse ASUA, which will create a more representative ASUA,”” Colletti said.

Lowering the signature requirement by 100 came after Colletti said that ASUA had the highest signature requirement of any student government in the Pacific 10 Conference. Less signatures make it seem more accessible to those not already in ASUA and encourage students to go beyond the requirement, according to ASUA President Emily Fritze, adding that in the past, non-eligible signatures have barred otherwise eligible candidates from running.

Candidates can now also run on slates. Slates allow candidates to share campaign materials and run on a conjoined platform but, unlike a ticket, voters can pick which candidates they want out of any particular slate.

Several senators raised questions regarding unfair advantage with slates.

“”(It should be) the best individuals, not necessarily the best groups of campaigning and putting T-shirts and fliers out,”” Sen. Garrett Voge said.

Fritze countered by saying, “”It’s politics.

“”It’s the voter’s choice, it’s the student body’s choice,”” she said. “”This is about giving candidates and students more options and leaving the decision up to them as to how to run an election and how to vote.””

The senate clarified that violations of elections code do not go before the senate because it is up to the elections commissioner’s discretion if a violation occurred. The ASUA Supreme Court has final jurisdiction over appeals.

Other student body concerns also came before the senate.

Fliers for free financial workshops, headed by Sen. Mary Myles, received funding by the senate, to advertise forums for students to get help in filling out their financial aid forms such as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

“”The more requests the Arizona legislature sees for FAFSA forms and for financial aid, the more they see that it is an issue for students, paying for college,”” said Sen. Chad Travis, presenting for Myles who wasn’t present because of a mandatory exam.

Another announcement previewed the graduate career services fair to be held on Nov. 3. The fair brings representatives from UA, Arizona State University and other graduate programs nationwide to undergraduates interested in pursuing a graduate degree.

“”This is our biggest graduate affair so far,”” said Lizzie Schloss, associate director of Career Services, adding that there are more than 90 programs nationally ranging “”from sciences to the arts, law, business, education, et cetera.””

CatPac: Cats for Israel also made an informational presentation about the divestment movement.

The group noted that as college senators and possibly future state senators, it is “”important to understand this relationship (between Israel and America) and the importance of it,”” said Ross Green, a CatPac member and undergraduate.

They asked the ASUA Senate to “”be knowledgeable”” and make decisions based on their own knowledge rather than other “”propaganda.””

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