MVC rules restrict election posters

Some students said discrepancies between campaign postering rules at GW’s Foggy Bottom and Mount Vernon campuses are unfair because they restrict Mount Vernon residents from receiving candidate information.

The Joint Elections Committee designates two locations for candidates to put up campaign posters at Mount Vernon, a more limited area than at the Foggy Bottom campus.

Candidates are allowed one poster on each of two bulletin boards, located at Ames Dining Hall and at the community lounge in the Women’s Center, JEC Chairman Joshua Hiscock said.

On the Foggy Bottom campus, candidates can hang campaign material at the Marvin Center, Academic Center, academic buildings on the Quad, Funger Hall and the areas adjacent to the main entrances of Ross Hall, Tompkins Hall, the Hall of Government and Monroe Hall, according to the JEC charter.

Hiscock said the Mount Vernon rules were created last year in response to student concerns that candidates would harm the aesthetics of the campus with posters.

Foggy Bottom campus regulations are not as strict, and the rule discrepancy concerned some Mount Vernon residents last year, Hiscock said.

SA Sen. Matt Silverstein (U-at large) said the same rules should apply to both campuses.

“People at Mount Vernon feel isolated and elections are something that brings the University together,” he said. “I feel the JEC has tried to limit the freedom of candidates this election season and I don’t like limiting freedom of speech.”

Sophomore Jen Leeson, who lived at Mount Vernon last year, said stricter postering rules at Mount Vernon limited her participation in student elections.

“I felt we were kept in the dark and didn’t know when events were happening,” she said. “I think it is important for them to be making a conscious effort to include Mount Vernon women in Foggy Bottom social matters but two posters isn’t going to get the word out.”

Josh Hartman, a campaigner for SA presidential candidate Roger Kapoor, said postering is not the most important part of a campaign. He said he is glad the SA candidates can get their election materials out in at least two places.

“We are happy JEC is taking this seriously and making efforts to enforce the rules,” Hartman said.

In the past, student groups and candidates competed for space, he said. But now, Hartman said reserved bulletin boards ensure candidates will have space for election materials.

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