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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Re: Letter from Senator Romano

    Unfortunately Mr. Romano’s response obfuscates the facts and muddles the central issue, which is the current loophole in Article XIX of the Election Board By-laws, which allows organizations “whose enumerated or implied purpose” is of a political nature to influence, unfairly in my opinion, student elections by being permitted to support a candidate’s political campaign. While direct monetary donations are prohibited, such clubs could use their student activity fee derived budget to print fliers, posters, and other campaign paraphernalia in order to support a candidate’s campaign, and may wish to derive certain political favors from a candidate by opening their budget to supporting a potential candidate’s campaign. This, in my opinion, is not a transparent or fair way to run campaigns.

    While I have nothing against a club or organization publicly endorsing a candidate and urging its members to vote for whom they believe would best serve as a USG officer, and to even give support in terms of man power and e-mail or Facebook endorsements, the line must be drawn at use of the club’s budget, which is derived from the Student Activity Fee of students, in order to support a candidate by purchasing on his/her behalf campaign posters, fliers, or other materials. That money is intended to be used to put on events or purchase materials for the use of club members and the student body as a whole, and not to be used as capital with which to help a candidate achieve office.

    Sincerely yours, Esam Al-Shareffi

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