Welcome back to your daily round-up of the election news, during the Officer Elections at Sheffield Students’ Union.
In it for the long haul
Today saw the deadline for candidates to pull out of the race, meaning anyone who hasn’t done it by now is in it until the bitter end.
Three candidates have pulled out since the list of people running was announced: Gabriel Bailey who was running for President, Education candidate Abir Patwary and Student Trustee candidate Mithuna Maran.
Debate doesn’t add up
The first Forge Debate for the Officer Elections were held last night, and it started with the candidates for SU Development Officer.
Host Luke Baldwin highlighted the financial aspects of the role and asked the candidates what they thought qualified them for the role, two – Mel Kee and Andrew Tyler – cited their A-level maths as one of theirs (among others, of course). A fitting qualification if ever there was one.
Everyone actively gets along
The Activities Officer candidates were also quizzed on their policies and suitability for their job last night. Unlike the Development candidates who were generally ready to take each other to task on their policies, the Activities crew got along swimmingly, with little drama to be spoken of.
Luke Baldwin asked them about ideas such as Luke Hawtin’s rewards for inclusive societies and Inez Lau’s plan for a committee pantry (she confirmed her secret plot is to put it in Gallery Eye).
Hots up in the international debate
On the night, the International Officers’ debate was one of the most heated, with disagreements on issues such as the International Students’ Committee and candidates’ views on Brexit.
All the candidates were present at the debate except for Tawfik Alhashemi and Bikramaditya Ghosh.
Presidents debate kicks off
However, the award for most contested debate goes to the one for President.
Andrew Baker clashed with Lilian Jones and Elliott O’Rourke over his policy to scrap gender quotas, arguing that people should be “treated equally”, while Elliott and Lilian reasoned that society doesn’t treat people from disadvantaged groups equally, and thus need help from measures such as quotes.
Theo Routh, demonstrating his love of rules and regulations, quizzed Kerry Miller on her knowledge of the constitutional roles of the President. Luke Baldwin moved the conversation on, noting that while knowing the Constitution is an impressive skill, it is “a very long and boring document”.
Shelby Storey defended her policy of dog-friendly study spaces. When presenter Luke Baldwin argued that the idea didn’t have legs, she won over the crowd with the retort: “it has four”. She also said she’d be less nervous with her dog present, and Luke conceded that was probably true for everyone.
As part of the debate for President, all of the candidates seemed to agree that it was important to improve participation in the Elections by students.
They proposed ideas such as going out and talking to the masses, running workshops and increasing accountability of things like SU Council.
Our ruler watches over us
Current Students’ Union President Kieran Maxwell was keeping a close eye on the debate from home last night, with his housemate and former Opinion editor Robin Wilde tweeting a picture of the man himself watching the candidates slug it out.
This came in response to a Guido Forge tweet suggesting a coup was underway due to a technical issue that temporarily halted coverage of the President’s debate.
He's monitoring the situation from his luxury Swiss apartment pic.twitter.com/zGFQon1LWR
— Robin Wilde (@Robin_CG) February 20, 2018
Join us again tomorrow for more news about the Officer Elections, as we look forward to the second of the Forge Debates with the candidates for the Welfare, Sports, Women’s and Education Officer positions.