The second debate of the Student Government (SG) presidential election got personal, with each candidate discussing promises they’ve made so far and things they’ve done in the past.
All five presidential candidates faced questions formulated from feedback on the Facebook page of Bulls Radio, where the debate was broadcasted and streamed online.
“We chose the things that were the crucial parts of their debate and things they were known for,” said Brendan Collett, the station’s business director and moderator of the debate. “I think we really reflected what the students wanted to hear.”
Presidential candidate Christopher Leddy was asked how he would maintain a good relationship with SG members after his push for the impeachment of SG Attorney General Cordell Chavis last semester.
Leddy, a senior majoring in political science and history, said, if elected, he would maintain a professional relationship among all SG branches.
“It is essential to be professional with members you’re working with and put politics aside,” he said. “What I can do is be professional, be ethical, be transparent and be accountable.”
Candidate Tim Moore, a junior majoring in business management, was questioned about his lack of experience in SG at USF.
“I think my lack of involvement in USF is a great way to start,” he said. “There’s a perception of those who are involved that is only held by those collective view, and they don’t see the whole university.”
Last year, the SG executive branch increased its number of paid positions. Since candidate Andrew Cohen serves on that branch, Cohen said his presidency would result in fewer positions.
“Instead of hiring a full staff at the beginning of the year, we are going to hire directors, and when the workload becomes too much for that individual department, then that director will then hire additional staff,” said Cohen, SG director of University and Community Affairs.
Collett said some students raised concerns that Greek Life has influence in obtaining SG positions.
But candidate Cesar Hernandez said his connections as former fraternity president of Lambda Theta Phi has resulted in significant philanthropy work.
“Yes, I am a fraternity man, but you have to see what I use the fraternity for. I am also the only undergraduate CEO at USF, and one of the things I have done is raise funds for the only hospital in northern Uganda,” he said.
Candidate Daniel Dunn, who has campaigned that, if elected, he will hold a public forum fortnightly, was asked for more details on his initiative.
“We’ll have it someplace. It could be outside if it’s nice and sunny,” said Dunn, a senior majoring in philosophy and former opinion editor of The Oracle. “We can have it in the Senate Chambers, depending on how many people we want to accommodate.”
Presidential elections will be held Feb. 22-25.