Staudt-West win Student Government presidency

Zackary Reece congratulates Cody West (L) and Cole Staudt (R) after they win the presidential and vice presidential positions of Student Government on March 4.

Zach Clemens

Cole Staudt and Cody West were elected as president and vice president of Student Government, which was announced in the Memorial Union Friday night.

They received 48.46 percent of the total vote count. Staudt and West received over 1,300 more votes than any other candidates did.

Raghul Ethiraj and Akol Dok, another executive slate on the ballot, came in second with 25.64 percent while fellow candidates Zackary Reece and Cole Button came in third with 23.6 percent of the vote. 

Alex Rodgers, the election commissioner, said he was ecstatic about the voter turnout. There were 5,742 votes and comprised 15.9 percent of the student population. That is up 3 percent from last year.

Rodgers said he believes the current voting system works and cautions that going back to the old system — which was the website — would cost the students approximately $40,000 upfront, but it would be in place for the next 10 to 12 years.

Not only did students vote for the executive slate and senators, but there were five referendums on the ballot.

The Supreme Court referendum, which reserved nominees should be named by the Senate, passed with 78.79 percent of the vote, or 4,403 votes of the total 5,588.

The Campustown referendum, or a move to make Campustown a sub-constituency of United Residents of Off-Campus (UROC), also passed with 4,388 votes of the total 5,471.

Other referendums that passed include Student Government Constitution amendments, with 5,119 votes or 92.35 percent of the total 5,543 votes. This referendum covered a variety of changes to the Constitution, including: required training for the president and finance director as well as the insertion of a non-discrimination statement to preamble K.

However, the cabinet treasurer referendum failed with majority weighing at 50.6 percent, or 2,792 votes of a total 5,518. If passed, this referendum would have removed the position of treasurer as a statutory member of the executive cabinet.

Staudt said it was very nerve wracking waiting for the results, and once they came on the screen it was a weight lifted off his shoulders. He first wanted to thank his team and the student body.

“I want to thank all the voters, whomever they voted for; our campaign team who all worked really hard,” Staudt said. “The voter turnout was good, but we want it to be higher next year, up to 20 percent.”

He plans to get to work right away; Staudt and West had a transition team working separate from the campaign in the event that they won. Staudt said he hopes to get executive cabinet applications out next week.

As for Reese, he said running for president was a great experience that shaped him and opened his eyes to student issues.

“Of course I am upset, but I’m more upset for the campaign team who worked so hard,” he said.

Even though he came in second place, Ethiraj said he views it as a win.

“Hopefully next year it might actually inspire multicultural and international students to care about Student Government, and in that way we won,” he said.

Current Student Government President Dan Breitbarth said he still has work to do, including working on issues of diversity, printing credit equality and the upcoming cyclone market, but he thought it was a good election season.

“I was impressed by all candidates and I think they did a good job reaching out,” Breitbarth said. “I look forward to working with [Staudt] and [West] to get things accomplished.”

Other candidates elected:

College of Veternary Medicine – 1 seat

A tie between Brent Sexton, Dharmin Rokad, Isabelle Gerbatsch, Jyothsna, Ramesh-Kumar and Peter Sojka.

Graduate College – 3 seats

George Weston, 31 votes

Christopher Perez, 18 votes

Fabian Campbell, 3 votes

College of Human Sciences – 2 seats 

Drew Miller, 612 votes

David Moore III, 521 votes

College of Business – 2 seats

Peter Myers, 692 votes

Georges Niang, 6 votes 

College of Agruculture and Life Sciences – 2 seats

Cody West, 770 votes

Alex Brand, 610 votes

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences – 3 seats 

Cole Staudt, 756 votes

Aimee Rodin, 645 votes

Roberto Cortes Ortiz, 540 votes

College of Engineering – 4 seats 

Adam Millsap, 832 votes

Charles Faunce, 766 votes

Jon Roettger, 705 votes

Koki Tomoeda, 578 votes

Schilleter/University Village – 1 seat

It was a tie between 24 candidates with one vote each.

Campustown – 1 seat

Cody Smith, 2 votes

Interfraternity Council – 1 seat

Steven Valentino, 132 votes

Collegiate Panhellenic Council – 1 seat

Anais Romero-Rios, 5 votes

Frederiksen Court – 1 seat

Isaiah Baker, 5 votes

Nathan Schaffer, 5 votes

IRHA – 5 seats

Zoe Shipley, 1,533 votes

Bradlee Fair, 1,258 votes

Michael Lauer, 20 votes

Samuel Freestone, 13 votes

Jack Utterback, 10 votes

UROC – 9 seats

Meredith Cook, 1,005 votes

Danielle Nygard, 949 votes

Jane Kersch, 937 votes

Michael Snook, 937 votes

Maria Achevald, 917 votes

Benjamin Crawford, 898 votes

Cameron Thompson, 836 votes

Ryan Starn, 832 votes

Eric Wirth, 764 votes