Second week straw poll yields similar results

Two student body election straw polls have yielded similar results, with candidates Juan Soltero and Bruno Portigliatti garnering the most votes and the green fee passing by more than 70 percent.

Student Alliance for a Politically Active Campus (SAPAC), which conducted the polls, counted votes only from students planning to vote in the SG election next week,
tallying 203  responses from the 236 students who voted in Wednesday’s poll.

Though the results are not scientific, 37.5 percent of Wednesday’s participants supported candidates Soltero and Portigliatti.

Candidates Christopher Leddy and Kayla Richmond were supported by 21.3 percent of voters, Christopher Cano and Jaime Lane by 12.3 percent and Ralph Reid and Robin Roup by 7.8 percent. Torend Ebner Jr, who dropped out of the race last week, received 0.4 percent of the vote.

SAPAC decided to conduct polls over two weeks to see if the level of campaigning changed from week to week or trends could be noticed. However, all candidates placed in the same order in both polls.

The campus green fee was approved by 76.8 percent of those polled Wednesday, similar to last week’s 73.7 percent.

This week’s results showed a larger amount of students were undecided, 20.7 percent, compared to last week’s 16 percent.

During both weeks, the poll was conducted at two locations: inside the Marshall Student Center and outside of Cooper Hall.

Christian Marble, president of SAPAC, said the organization hoped for more volunteers than it received, which limited the group from dispersing itself throughout campus.

“I feel that if there were two spots to pick on campus that have the most traffic and the most diversity of students, that we picked those two,” he said. “If we had a more standard operation in the future, we’d want to expand to at least Argos or Andros — the cafeteria areas — and perhaps to some other parts of campus, such as the College of Engineering or the College of Business.”

Marble said he was satisfied with the overall turnout of the event.

“Two hundred and thirty-six is a good sample size,” he said. “You can’t exactly pool every single college in every single time zone that students operate by.”

Susan MacManus, a political science professor, said straw polls are not meant to be scientific at the college level.

Straw polls are meant to educate students about an election and be fun for students, she said.

“A number of students have become aware (of elections) because of the straw poll,” Marble said. “I feel that because of that it was a pretty successful first event for us.”