Each year, bickering and lack of consensus on planning for upcoming Student Association elections seem to dominate much of the SA’s time and effort during the spring semester. This year, the Senate has started early, passing a resolution on the rules for next semester’s election. While there are still some technical issues to be worked out, the SA should use this early start as an opportunity to quickly settle election matters, allowing time for work on more substantive issues.
In previous years, electoral politics have been the major focus of GW’s student government. SA members should use their early start to settle all election matters by the final exam period.
Such a timetable would provide ample opportunity to work out the logistical issues associated with the elections. Members of the Joint Elections Committee would then have a longer period of time to familiarize themselves with the rules and ensure a fair campaign and voting period.
Furthermore, an early schedule would keep the actual elections on track for a reasonable time of the semester. Last year, a runoff election for the SA presidency spilled into April and many students were unsure of when they could vote, as the election took place later than previous years. By settling electoral matters early, such problems could be easily avoided.
In addition, a smooth transition is necessary to ensure that the collaborative efforts in this year’s administration continue into the next. An early election would provide ample time for the training of political successors.
Overall, a December deadline for setting electoral issues in stone is perfectly reasonable for the SA.