Presidential pre-campaigning delayed for at least a week

Jonah Dylan, Assistant Campus Editor

The pre-campaigning process for Associated Student Government presidential election has been delayed for at least a week after an election commission wasn’t appointed during Wednesday’s Senate meeting.

Speaker of the Senate Nehaarika Mulukutla said she and parliamentarian Shelby Reitman decided to postpone the decision until next week’s Senate.

“We didn’t do it for a variety of reasons,” the Weinberg junior said. “One, we didn’t feel it was appropriate; two, there was going to be low attendance. There are relatively fewer people coming for the first two weeks of Winter Quarter.”

ASG’s code mandates that pre-campaigning begin following the second Senate of Winter Quarter. However, because the election commission was not instated this week, candidates can’t disclose their intention to run.

Despite the lack of an election commision for at least a week, Mulukutla said the campaign process won’t otherwise be disturbed.

According to ASG’s code, the pre-campaigning process lasts until Spring Quarter, when candidates are allowed to officially announce their candidacies and begin the formal campaigning process. During the pre-campaign process, candidates don’t have to formally announce their intentions to run and only have to say they’re “strongly considering running.”

Candidates can’t formally start “nonverbal campaigning” — including launch parties, websites and social media accounts — until nine days before the election, which takes place in early April. ASG’s code lays out strict rules for how candidates are allowed to campaign.

Weinberg senior Lauren Thomas, an ASG senator who served as election commissioner last year, said potential presidential candidates didn’t contact her before the middle of Winter Quarter last year. It’s unlikely any candidates would have contacted the commissioner this week, she said.

Thomas echoed Mulukutla in saying attendance is usually lower for the first two Senates of Winter Quarter, partly because many senators are taking part in fraternity and sorority recruitment.

“The election commision should change the code, and I’ll recommend that,” she said.

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