Student Government Association slates debate on WCRD despite technical difficulties

The Daily News

Members from each executive slate running in the Student Government Association debated on WCRD 91.3 Sunday, but not without a few technical difficulties first.

One representative from each slate running for office spent Sunday afternoon discussing the campaign and platform points with Zach Hartley on the radio station. 

Fusion secretary candidate Kylie Marcus, Cardinal United treasurer candidate Brandon Pope and Spark treasurer candidate Kevin Mullaney represented their respective slates during the prerecorded debate. 

The debate was originally planned to be aired live, but Hartley, host and SGA debate coordinator, said the show had to be prerecorded because WCRD aired a basketball game at the same time. The show was delayed about 25 minutes after the end of the game due to technical difficulties. 

The delay was only one effect of the technical difficulties, involving a problem with files and only the first 15 minutes transferring to the studio. During airing, the show cut out several times, and the debate was restarted multiple times. Marcus said she heard multiple instances when the station went completely silent as well.

Mullaney said he thinks the difficulties had an effect on the amount of people listening to the debate.

“Some people said that it was just a technical difficulty, but when they heard the introduction about three or four times, they had memorized that whole section of it all, but that was when they stopped tuning in,” he said.

Pope said the fewer amount of students being able to hear gives the slates more motivation to push harder to get the word out to students. 

“I understand that things do happen, but it is unfortunate because a lot of students didn’t get to hear what we had to say,” he said.

Eric Swinehart, WCRD general manager, said the issues will be resolved for the broadcasting of the rest of the debates, and the recorded debate from Sunday was posted to later that night. 

“It got out all of the information that it needed to get out there, and it got fair representation for each of the parties because our team was also tweeting out,” he said.

Hartley wanted to give the secretary and treasurer candidates a chance to speak as a way to diversify the discussion coming from the slates. In the past, the treasurer and secretary candidates are only heard at the full slate debate. 

“We already host a debate with the presidential and vice presidential candidates,” Hartley said. “We don’t hear from the secretary and treasurer candidates by themselves. We wanted to break it down a bit and hear from them one-on-one instead of having the president at every single debate.” 

Candidates were asked about how their slates came together, how campaigning is going and how the range of SGA experience within the group helps their slate. 

Pope said he enjoyed his hectic schedule this past week, balancing campaigning with classes and work. 

“I have been having a blast and I mean that,” Pope said. “I don’t see it as campaigning but just learning about how they run and why they are so passionate about what they do. I’m just out learning about people and learning about this campus more.”

Marcus, who did not know her slate members before joining with them, said her personal favorite platform point is the emphasis on promoting BSU Dance Marathon. 

“We need to bring awareness for this,” Marcus said. “I think it’s amazing students don’t know what it is. As a campus, we can raise even more to put our name out there and it can be a thing BSU is known for.”

Mullaney said Spark is an acronym for the slates’ platform points and represents what it is trying to accomplish. 

“We want to spark a relationship with students and connect them back to SGA,” Mullaney said. “We want them to collaborate at creating an awesome experience and bring everyone together. We all chose to come here and we all should have pride in it.”

Hartley said the debate helped start the conversation to lead up to the debates later this week.

“The goal of this was to break the ice and hear a little bit about the platforms and the individual candidates,” he said. “We’ll really dive into it [with the upcoming debates].”

All three candidates encouraged listeners to attend the slate debate next week. 

The presidential debate is Monday at 8:30 in the L.A. Pittenger Student Center Ballroom and the vice presidential debate will be 7 p.m. Tuesday at in the Student Center Ballroom. 


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