WBUL hosted the third and final presidential debate in front of approximately 20 students Monday night in the basement of the Phyllis P. Marshall Center.
Although many of the questions were the same as those asked in previous debates, the format was different, and this time the tickets had the opportunity to give rebuttals to their opponents’ answers.
A main platform for both tickets is being more accessible to the student body while in office, as well as advocating for student life and involvement.
“I think getting (students) involveddefinitely has to do with letting (students) know what we’re responsible for,” presidential candidate Jessica Asuncion said. “There are so many ways we can get (students) involved, but how can they know how they can get involved if they don’t know what’s out there or what we can offer, the services we have and how we can advocate for them?”
Asuncion’s opponent, Barclay Harless, said maintaining a strong freshman orientation is key to getting more students involved, as is having Student Government be more visible at student activities on campus.
“Orientation is a major part of getting students not only involved on campus, but also to know what Student Government does,” Harless said. “Being at campus events is also one of the major things that needs to happen on a more frequent basis.”
Harless and running mate Garin Flowers went on to say that they want to work with SG to get cell phones for members of the executive branch so members of the student body can contact their representatives directly.
“We’re looking into having in our budget some type of cell phones that are paid for by Student Government that every student will have the number on,” Harless said. “Basically, they’ll be able to call us up and speak to us directly if they have an issue or something they would like to discuss.”
Asuncion’s running mate Tony Caldwell questioned this idea, saying his ticket has been accessible with their phone numbers during the entire campaign.
“We’re not going to get a Student Government cell phone, we’ll give them our cell phone numbers and tell them, ‘Hey, talk to me on Facebook.’ … We’re not going to have Student Government pay for that,” Caldwell said.
The tickets fired back and forth throughout the debate, criticizing each other’s level of involvement and the impact each has made on the organizations they have been a part of.
In the end, though, both tickets said they feel their activities have given them the experience needed to succeed in the presidential and vice presidential positions.
Voting begins 9 a.m. today and will run through 7 p.m. Wednesday. Students may vote for presidential and senatorial candidates at sg.usf.edu/vote.