Congratulations go out to Steven Vail for a successful campaign this election season. Vail, through the power of write-in votes, defeated the only candidate on the ballot last week to become the new Student Association president. While the official election results are not yet available, Vail accomplished a once unthinkable task – he got the sedentary Castleton College population to vote. According to a source close to the election, there were close to 100 more votes cast this election than the last.
And by doing so, he caused controversy.
Vail decided, after seeing only one candidate on the ballot, that he should run for the S.A. presidency and give the college more choices. Gee what an absurd thought, choice in college.
So instead of hanging up flyers that, according to Vail, “no one would bother looking at,” he went out and introduced himself, shook students’ hands and asked them to vote for him — and more so, to vote period.
However, witnesses to the election say that Vail broke the 50-foot boundary that a candidate is allowed near a polling booth. While Vail denies this claim and the college court ruled in his favor after an appeal was issued by the vice president of academics, there remains a sediment of detest by the standing executive branch.
But is the controversy really about the distance Vail was from the booth? Or is the executive branch upset that one of its own was beat in what was thought to be an automatic win for Dave Stebbins?
Both the vice president of the S.A. and the vice president of academics claim the election was tainted and should be thrown out, not because their choice for president lost, but because they claim Vail violated election rules.
Legality issues aside, Vail needs to be commended for his effort to get out there meet people and urge them to vote. With all the talk about voter apathy and an uninterested student body, how can anyone complain about voter participation that increases by almost 100 percent?
If Vail violated an election rule, then have another election. There is a chance that even more people will turn out to vote.
This situation is still progressing and will certainly have more fun facts upcoming, but isn’t nice to see that finally the college has something controversial.
This is a college campus, and although the sit-in days appear to be over, anytime a situation can cause us to think a little more than we regularly do it’s a good thing.