Vice Presidential debate wraps up with announcement of cross endorsements
Yesterday at the GUSA debate, the four vice presidential candidates had an hour and a half to give their campaign spiels and answer tough questions about their respective platforms. With the limited 30-second speaking period, the candidates occasionally struggled to concisely fit in all of their answers, but Vox will give you the basic gist of what went down.
The candidates revealed their endorsements: the Lloyd-Ramirez ticket supports the Singer-Silkman ticket, and vice versa. Tezel-Jikaria and Weiss-Greco tickets are endorsing each other.
In response to the first question about what is the number one thing that makes your campaign unique, Jimmy Ramirez (COL ’15) said the What’s a Hoya? reform so student groups that want to put on events can have housing incentives. Omika Jikaria (SFS ’15) named empowering her staff through the appointment of experts in each area as her number one. Dan Silkman (COL ’15) said the general breakdown of institutional barriers, and Sam Greco (SFS ’15) named repairing communication between students and administration.
When talking about the attention (or lack thereof) GUSA attracts from the student body, Ramirez stated that the organization has developed a good relationship with administrators and students alike and wants to continue this level of accessibility. Silkman, however, said that there is a gap, and that the momentum during elections should continue even after they end. Jikaria said GUSA should give students access to the administration, and Greco wants to create a website and better the social media practices.
The candidates also addressed why they were positioned as VPs on their tickets. Greco said that he and Ben had agreed to be a team even before they decided on individual positions. Silkman said he and Zach became close during NSO this past fall and wants to compliment his running mate’s extensive GUSA knowledge. “Thomas and I are running together because he’s the Lady Gaga to my R. Kelly,” said Ramirez. Similarly, Jikaria said she is also a compliment to Trevor. “I bring in that fresh perspective,” she said.
Pluralism, sexual assault, gender neutral housing, and grade inflation were all tackled in questions from the audience. The candidates also listed the transfer student population, students seeking resources for mental health, students of color, and those of low socio-economic status as major underrepresented groups on campus that they plan on reaching out to.
When asked whether they would pursue a similar course of action in terms of the reaction to the satellite campus and the ensuing One Georgetown campaign, the candidates differed. Greco believes the One Georgetown campaign strained GUSA’s relationship with administrators: as it was not a foregone conclusion, other options should have been explored before a public campaign was launched. Silkman, on the other hand, said he would have done exactly what his running mate Zach Singer (SFS ’15) did, to the laughs in the audience, as he was one of the main organizers of the campaign. Jikaria would have looked into why student voices weren’t heard before that point, and Ramirez said he would have done something similar but would have tried to look ahead more.
At the conclusion of the debate closing statements were not made, as the question and answer section lasted longer than expected.
Photo: Isabel Echarte/Georgetown Voice