All four members of Boston University Student Government slate BU’s Push to Start were elected to the SG executive board Wednesday.
Due to complaints filed with the Student Elections Commission, TrueBU incurred 450 penalty points during the race, resulting in a loss of one day’s worth of campaigning. The infraction subtracted 83 votes from the campaign, the SEC said.
Nearly 3,500 students voted in the election, about 300 more than those who voted in 2013.
SG President-elect Richa Kaul said she was pleased with the support her slate received from the student body.
“Seeing the vote counts, it’s just hard to imagine that so many people can believe in you, and you don’t know that many people on campus,” said Kaul, a College of Arts and Sciences sophomore. “It’s just absolutely amazing.”
Kaul commended TrueBU for their efforts.
“The way that they campaigned, the passion [with] which they campaigned and the pure effort they put into it — it was astounding,” she said.
TrueBU presidential candidate Alexander Golob said he was proud of his slate despite the loss.
“I think that we have done an incredibly strong job at talking about ideas and inspiring people who wouldn’t have voted before,” said Golob, a College of Fine Arts sophomore.
TrueBU’s vice president of finance candidate Salma Yehia said she was amazed by the people her team inspired during the elections.
“I kind of started tearing up because I was so proud of every single person I have interacted with because of this campaign,” said Yehia, a CAS junior.
BU’s Push to Start will now prepare for their new positions during a transition period with the current SG executive board, said Vice President of Internal Affairs-elect Jamie Ellis.
“Our first steps are to sit down with the outgoing executive board [and] make sure we can pick up on any initiatives where they’re leaving off,” said Ellis, a College of Communication junior.
Ellis said she and Vice President-elect Joe Ferme, a CAS junior, would be staying in Boston over the summer to begin working on platform issues.
Golob said even with the election’s outcome, he and the TrueBU team would continue to pursue their platform.
“We plan on, and we are continuing working on, the issues that we see as affecting the student body regardless of whether we hold a position or not,” Golob said. “While we might have lost the election, our ideas do not die afterwards, and neither does TrueBU. So expect to see us later on.”
Golob said his team would continue to discuss issues concerning behavioral health and sustainability with BU administration in the future.
Members of BU’s Push to Start said they would make efforts not only to implement their platform, but also to gain input from TrueBU supporters as well, Kaul said.
“[What] we want to do is reach out to everybody who really supported TrueBU and say, ‘so what made you so fired up?’” Kaul said. “’What part of their agenda got you going, got you supporting them?’ And hopefully we can, with their permission, incorporate that into our agenda for next year.”
Golob said it was important to have an independent body overseeing SG elections.
“Just because [the penalties] didn’t have an impact on this election doesn’t mean that having a system to hold various campaigns accountable is not worthwhile,” he said. “That being said, TrueBU still feels that our evidence was not heard and that some of our complaints were not processed as thoroughly as they could have been.”
SEC Chairwoman Lauren LaVelle, a School of Management senior, said the SEC did its best to handle the large influx of complaints in this election. Upon receiving complaints, at least one SEC member would head to the scene of the complaint to investigate, she said. LaVelle also said the SEC carefully considered evidence presented in both complaints and appeals.
“That is how [SEC members] worked together this year, and if other people next year want to handle this differently, that’s to be told later,” she said.
LaVelle said next year’s election code would not receive major overhaul, though the SEC may implement minor tweaks.