Union primary election results announced
Published: Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Updated: Tuesday, May 31, 2011 23:05
Results from the first round of Student Union elections were announced last Thursday in an e-mail to candidates, campus media and various Union bodies.Abby Kulawitz '12 won the seat for senator for the Class of 2012. Albert Feldman '13, a member of the most recent midyear class, became senator for Village Quad by winning 57 out of 88 votes. Abraham Berin '11 became senator for Charles River with 14 votes.
Melissa Skolnik '12 won the seat for the senator for East Quad position with 55 out of 105 of the total votes. All of the candidates for the position were written in directly by the voters. Over the course of the election, 17 names were written in, with most receiving one or two votes. Rick Alterbaum '12, who was originally running unopposed for senator of East Quad, decided to drop out of the election.
Ryan Martin '10 won the seat for the associate justice for the Union Judiciary position against Deena Glucksman '11 in the second round of voting held last Sunday. A second round of voting takes place when any candidate does not receive 50 percent of the total votes for the position.
A special election will be held today for the Student Union secretary position after former Secretary Diana Aronin '11 was removed from office Jan 31. Aronin was removed from office for failing to present a referendum regarding the creation of a midyear senator position to the Brandeis community. Brahm Wachter '12 and Jourdan Cohen '11 are running for the position.
A Facebook event, "WRITE IN DIANA AND SAY SCREW THE STUDENT UNION," was created by Jennie Shapiro '11 and has 145 members. The event description reads, "We're writing in Diana Aronin to show the Student Union that they take themselves too seriously." Student Union President Andy Hogan '11 declined to comment on the Facebook event.
Some successful candidates were concerned about the participation rate in the Union election.
"With only 55 votes I was able to win by a landslide," Skolnik said, continuing, "and so I'd have to say that it seems to me that there isn't much care [for the elections. and people must not have such huge complaints."
"Political efficacy at Brandeis, I'm sure as everyone knows, is very low," Berin said. He added that he decided to run for Charles River senator primarily to fill the vacancy.
The turnouts for eligible voters ranged from the 6.58 percent that voted for Charles River Senator position to the 43.35 percent that voted for the Village Quad Senator.
Hogan commented that the participation rate seemed "standard" for the Union, noting that some senator positions did have competitors.
Last semester, the highest percentage of voters, at 56.23 percent, participated in the Class of 2013 senator election while the lowest, at 4.10 percent, participated in the off-campus senator election.
"I think this semester is going to be about putting all our noses to the grindstone and getting some results. I think students are excited by results and a lot of the times the Student Union doesn't deliver on the results, that they promise. So I think the idea is to complete projects, to outreach to the student body more, to make people more excited about getting involved," Hogan said.
Some successful candidates discussed their goals for the Student Union.
As senator, Feldman said that he wants to unify the midyear and non-midyear populations of the Village Quad.
Feldman said that he ran for the position because "I'm always looking out for my fellow midyears' backs."
Kulawitz said that she wants to get students more involved with supporting Brandeis sports teams. "My main platform was getting some way to get more students going to sporting events. . That's a really good way to kind of unite students, and although Brandeis isn't known for its sports, it's a really good aspect of our school," she told the Justice.
Martin told the Justice that he wants to "make the role of the Union Judiciary a little clearer for people." He hopes to update the Union Web site with clearer explanations of UJ rulings to make the student body more aware of the Judiciary's role in the Union.