Senators should educate student body, not change the system
The ASUCD Senate failed a bill on Thursday that
would ask voters in the fall senate election to repeal choice
voting. With the voting system, implemented in fall 2003, voters
rank candidates in order of preference - candidates are either
elected or eliminated after each round of vote tabulation.
The potential ballot measure abandoning choice
voting was misguided and abrupt. ASUCD has only used the system for
two elections - simply not enough time to know which method works
Some ASUCD officials complain that the system is
far too complicated for voters to understand. This is unacceptable
not only because it shows a refusal to adapt to a new system, but it
also underestimates the intelligence of the student body. UCD
students ought to be outraged at such hasty generalizations from
their student government officials.
In failing the bill, a majority of senators
recognized that it is too early to give up on a system that is
relatively new to student government. But the general attitude that
students cannot fathom the complexity of choice voting is
unsatisfactory at best.
Voters deserve a voting system they can
understand. But no system is inherently understood. If senators are
truly concerned that students do not know how choice voting works,
then they ought to make an effort to educate their constituents.
That means informing themselves first on how the voting system
works, so they can explain it to fellow students.
Additionally, the senate should charge the ASUCD
Elections Committee with the task of running a campaign to explain
choice voting. Instead of changing the system, ASUCD officials
should try to increase the dismal voter turnout.