It's Pat!
Dowd Wins GUSA Election

By Julia Cai
Published February 28th 2008 in The Hoya
Patrick Dowd (SFS ’09) won the runoff election for GUSA president this week, and will take office next month, the Election Commission announced tonight.

“We’re thrilled,” Dowd said.

Dowd and his running mate, James Kelly (COL ’09), earned 918 of the 2548 votes cast on the initial ballot, which was the most of any candidate although still not a majority of the votes. After two runoffs, they garnered 54 percent of ballots, earning them the victory.

Under instant runoff voting, voters rank candidates in order of preference. If no ticket receives a majority of votes, the last-place ticket is eliminated and the ballots which listed him as the first place choice are redistributed to the voters’ second choices. The process continues until one ticket has a majority of the ballots.

The ticket of Kyle Williams (COL ’09) and Brian Kesten (COL ’10) finished second, followed by D.W. Cartier (COL ’09) and Andrew Rugg (COL ’09) and David Dietz (COL ’10) and Tyler Stone (COL ’09). Williams and Kesten received 606 votes, Cartier and Rugg 488, and Dietz and Stone 436.

Kelly said the pair plan to follow through on their main campaign promise.

“We want to stick with what our platform stated,” he said. “We want to work hard to get subsidized housing for summer interns.”

Election Commissioner Maura Cassidy (COL ’08) met with the four candidates, student association President Ben Shaw (COL ’08) and other members of GUSA to announce the results of the runoff election this evening in the GUSA office.

“Good news is we got a very similar turnout to the original election,” Cassidy said to the candidates.

Cassidy said 232 more students voted in this election than in the first one.

The GUSA Senate voted on Monday to deny certification of the results of the original election, held last week, because of complaints about the ballot, which ordered the original eight candidates alphabetically, and voting patterns. The senate decided to hold a second election this week among the top four finishers in the first race, a choice that aroused controversy both within the senate and among candidates. Cartier said that he refused to vote in the second election, partly because not all eight original candidates were allowed to run. Some senators, though, said they voted to hold a second election because runoff voting more accurately represents voters’ wishes when the election is among fewer candidates.

Cassidy said GUSA would use instant runoff voting for next year's election.