Student Elections Result in Runoff This Week
The UCO Election Commission announced last week that the two slates continuing forward in the UCO Student Body Elections includes Zachary Robbins and Caleb Shaw ticket, left, and the Stockton Duvall and Madison Richard ticket. (Ryan Naeve/ The Vista).
Written by: Kateleigh Mills, editor-in-chief and Victor Quezada, reporter
Last Thursday the UCO Election Commissioner Caleb Power said there would be a runoff election this week after each of the three slates failed to receive over 51 percent of the student body vote.
The two slates that will be continuing forward in the election include the Zach Robbins and Caleb Shaw slate and the Stockton Duvall and Madison Richard slate. All of these candidates are currently in the UCO Student Congress.
The deliberations of an official student body count for each of the president candidates -Stockton Duvall, Zach Robbins and Elsa Ruiz- found that none of the candidates had received the majority vote.
There was a total of 1,323 enrolled students at the University of Central Oklahoma that voted on Wednesday and Thursday.
“This is more than 160% of any of the final vote counts since 2013,” Power wrote on his Facebook page.
Stockton Duvall received 49.5 percent of the vote, Elsa Ruiz 19.6 percent and Zach Robbins 30.8 percent, according to Power.
After the results came in, the UCOSA Election Commission met briefly in a closed meeting last Thursday to discuss a potential violation of one of the slates.
The allegation in question was whether or not one of the slates had asked the Athletics Department to support their platform and had encouraged their teams to vote a certain way.
However, the UCOSA Election Commission decided that based on the facts they were presented, the slate in question did not violate any of the election rules.
“We ruled that the candidate in question didn’t intentionally ask them to go, like, support them,” Power said.
In order for a slate to go and address a team on campus under the athletic department, they have to first talk to a coach and set up a time for the team to talk to candidates, Power said.
“We can’t confirm or deny whether or not, like, faculty, staff and administration supported the individual. But we also don’t believe that the slate had anything indirectly to do with it,” Power said.
Power also said that there is a possibility of two investigations looking into the allegations against the slate.
“A new UCOSA rule will be added next semester mandating that anybody who sees something like that going on, if it’s your own slate, you have to report it,” Power said. “As of right now there was no requirement to mandate that the slate reported it – so the slate didn’t intentionally break anything.”
In order to vote in the runoff this Wednesday, students can either visit a booth which will be set up from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. near the northwest entrance of the Nigh University Center, or online at UConnect.
Anyone that is a student is allowed to vote. Those that are not allowed to vote are those that are faculty, administration or staff, Power said.