ASUO elections meeting draws a crowd

Friday’s ASUO election’s mandatory candidate meeting had a significantly higher turnout than the last elections meeting. Only four interested students showed up to the informational meeting that was held on March 2.  All the seats at room 166 in Lawrence Hall were filled; several students from Ducks F.I.R.S.T. were spotted wearing matching red T-shirts in representation of their campaign slate. The other two campaigns are called UO Forward and We Are Oregon.

“I learned that we had 95 candidates who filed petitions, which is more than we’ve had in quite a while,” ASUO elections board coordinator Monica Nunan said.

For the most part, the structure of the mandatory candidate meeting largely resembled that of the informational meeting —Nunan opened up the elections board presentation with the new campaigning rules, then current ASUO senator Aven-Itza De Primavera presented plans for the election 2015 ASUO election voter guide.

Nunan mentioned her intentions to discuss “concerns” before an audience member interjected with the words, “advertising materials.”  This year’s ASUO elections forbid the distribution of material goods, such as T-shirts and flyers. However, goods handed out with the intent to educate students of their goals and members are allowed.

Nunan also talked in more detail about the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act waiver which candidates are highly encouraged to fill this election season. The FERPA waiver was introduced  to protect voters by showing any grievances filed against any candidate on the ballot.

The presentation showed the expectations for candidates in their interactions — to be respectful, and know the impact of their actions and words toward one another, and to honor the choice of students who do not want to be a part of the elections.

De Primavera spoke to the candidates about the new layout for the voter guide. This is the first year that an interactive voter guide will be used in an ASUO election. The team behind its development include journalism students Vania Ahmad, Kyle McGreevy-Mills, Joseph McRobert and current ASUO programs administrator Carter Fritsch.

“This has been a really good collaboration between the ASUO and the SOJC,” De Primavera said.

The sample voter guide presented at the meeting drew laughs from the crowd. The examples displayed 50 Cent as an accounting major running as a programs finance committee candidate.

The voter guide will include the same three questions for all candidates.

“We are going to give questions to you ahead of time so you aren’t just going to be asked something on the spot,”McGreevy-Mills said. “You are going to have time to prepare.”

Social media campaigning began Monday. Active campaigning begins on March 30, the first day of spring term. Nunan mentioned that although the second candidate meeting is not mandatory for candidates that showed up on Friday, she said that she will talk more about the standards of active campaigning.

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Andrew Field

Andrew Field

Former Japan Times intern. Daily Emerald reporter and FishDuck editor. Tokyo-Singapore-Houston-Eugene, but Oregonian forever. West Ham United and Portland Timbers fan.

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