Having received a majority of the votes, it is more than likely that junior and cabinet member Chris Calo will be officially declared the 2003-2004 Students’ Association President this week.

“The system online says there was no clear winner,” sophomore, Deputy Speaker of the SA Senate and the Chair of the Election Committee Peter Nabozny said.

“It is not clear whether there would be a run-off.”

The unofficial results posted on the SA Web site show Calo with 465 – 52.8 percent – of the 880 votes cast for the presidential election. There was a total of 1,077 students who voted, which means that there were some students who voted for Class Council elections but not the presidential election and vice versa. The reason that the computer system did not declare Calo a clear winner is uncertain.

“I think it turned out really well,” Calo said. “I’m still waiting for official results, but it looks positive.”

The turnout for the general election was approximately 30 percent and 24 percent for the presidential election, a decrease from the 31.3 percent turnout of last year’s election.

There are 29 write-in ballots that will not be added until Information Technology Services certifies that those students who voted using paper ballots did not vote online as well. However, if Calo did in fact receive 465 votes out of 880 than the results from the write-in ballots will not affect the results. The official numbers will be available by Friday. The numbers and percentages of votes the other candidates received are also not known yet, but will be posted online as soon as they are available.

The controversy

Two candidates, senior Steve Duszlak and junior Noah Kuschel, were punished for breaking election bylaws by violating the mass e-mail rule. Junior Andrew Baukney, Kuschel’s proxy, filed an appeal to the All- Campus Judicial Council for his candidate’s punishment. The ACJC decided on Tuesday that it would not hear the appeal.

“ACJC decided not to hear Andy’s appeal because ACJC can only hear appeals pertaining to violations of the constitution, and in this instance senate was following the constitution and their bylaws,” junior and Associate Chief Justice of ACJC Erica Contini said.

“According to the constitution and the bylaws senate had every right to do what they did,” Contini continued.

Duszlak was forbidden to campaign in Wilson Commons Friday for the rest of the campaign period. His campaign was punished after junior and UR Grassroots President Audrey Stuart sent out a mass e-mail Thursday.

The e-mail composed of the minutes from the Grassroots meeting where Duszlak campaigned for the office. Duszlak was not aware that the e-mail was sent out.

His punishment was effective Friday and Nabozny sent e-mails to all the candidates and their proxies informing them of the situation by Friday night.

“He should’ve told them not to include what he said in the minutes,” Nabozny said. “It was a mild offense,” Nabozny said.

Kuschel’s punishment is more strict because his degree of violation was greater, according to Nabozny.

He was not allowed to campaign at all after Sunday for the rest of the campaign period and the run-off, which at this point seems unlikely. The degree of violation was greater on Kuschel’s part because he sent an e-mail to the President of UR College Republicans Jonathan Vitale with the intent of forwarding the message to the rest of the group. Kuschel’s e-mail was addressed to his fellow College Republicans.

The e-mail was sent to Vitale on Friday morning and forwarded by Vitale to the UR College Republicans Sunday night.

UR has a policy about unsolicited mass e-mails, and the election bylaws state that any e-mail to two or more persons is a mass e-mail. Since one of persons who got the e-mail complained, it was unsolicited.

“[Kuschel] should’ve had [his rep.] Andy [Baukney] go to the meetings and talk to the group. That’s the whole reason we have proxies so that they do have a method to get the message out,” Nabozny said.

To carry out his punishment Kuschel’s posters were taken down by the members of the election committee.

“We said we’d take [the posters] down and take away the burden from his campaign to get it done by a certain time,” Nabozny said.

Desai can be reached at mdesai@campustimes.org.

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