Volume 90, Issue 68

Friday, January 24, 1997

Value Village



The clock is ticking and the presidential well is just a tad dry.

As of 10 p.m. last night there was only one official candidate for the University Students' Council's presidential elections campaign – last year's Medway president and fourth-year student Mark Smiley.

The reason this is so striking is that last call for presidential candidates comes at high noon today.

Our advice is to stay off the stairwell in the University Community Centre this morning because there's going to be a herd of candidates rushing up to the council office trying to beat the deadline.

And if the rumours are true, that presidential well will not only be full, it will be overflowing.

The question that springs to mind, however, is "Why the delay?"

In past campaigns, candidates have dropped off their nomination forms a week or more in advance. But this year, despite the fact that the number of candidates is rumoured to be in double-digits, there's only one who has come forward.

So what are the reasons for the delay? The problem with waiting this long is that it causes people to speculate about the reasons behind candidates waiting.

For the most part, students interested in running for the position of USC president made the decision months in advance. As well, platforms and campaigns are created months previous and campaign teams are formed.

So why not throw your hat in the ring a little earlier than the day of the deadline? The advantages are obvious. Despite strict regulations about pre-campaigning, the fact that a student's name is out there, will automatically cause some chatter and some publicity.

Any concerns about people trying to bring a candidate down before the official campaign period begins should be assuaged by the fact that the candidate has made the decision to run for USC president. The candidates should be confident enough in their abilities and their platforms to suffer the slings and arrows of the campaign.

Waiting until the end is a tactical error on the part of the candidates. Regardless of the truth, the impression can be left that these late-comers are unsure of their intent to run for the position or are waiting to see who else is running.

This may not be the case, but the seeds of doubt are planted.

Otherwise, by waiting until the end makes it look like candidates are just jockeying for some sort of imaginary position and are expecting to make a big splash by being the last to submit their nomination.

This isn't the type of party where showing up fashionably late is trendy.

To Contact The Editorial Department: gazed@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 1997