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Wednesday, May 29, 2024
The Observer

Observer Editorial: Your vote counts

We’ve been back in South Bend for less than three weeks, and campus life is in full swing. Class of 2020 commencement celebrations have been postponed yet again, undergraduate COVID cases are rising and in-person student activities have been put on hold for the next two weeks. Here’s another thing to add to your list — student body presidential elections.

With Wednesday’s vote rapidly approaching, we’d like to encourage our fellow undergraduate students to rush to the virtual polls (like wildebeests in migration) with an understanding of the many facets of these elections. While some aspects of student government may be lost on those not directly involved, it is important we do our best to actively participate in the representative selection process. Whichever ticket garners the most votes will become the student liaisons for the administration. Finding a candidate whose platform aligns with what you want for the future of your campus and voting for them is your way of impacting positive change through the student government.

However, this upcoming election does have an added twist. Last week, the Notre Dame student senate voted to include another question on students’ ballots: Should there be an increased number of signatures necessary to present student petitions through the senate? The result of this referendum will alter the access to legislative change for those uninvolved in student government. Regardless of one’s stance on the signage quota, this is yet another reason to make sure to vote.

If this does not persuade you to take action on Wednesday, let this be the clincher — voting in a Notre Dame student body election is easy. As long as you have access to the internet and your Notre Dame student email, it takes one minute to click a couple of boxes in a form to cast your vote.

While this election holds weight in campus happenings, please remember the result does not make or break the future of the student body. Yes, pay attention to tickets’ platforms and ideas. Yes, participate in the election process. No, do not let this create a toxic environment on campus. Every student body election in recent years has come with its contentious moments, but let’s work to minimize the scandal in these already trying times. We all remember how divisive and unhealthy election cycles in the real world have been of late — let’s not replicate those circumstances on our campus this year.

Next week, after speaking with each of the candidates and evaluating their platform, The Observer Editorial Board will endorse one of the three tickets vying for students’ votes. We will stand by our choice, but this does not mean your vote should be based solely on our endorsement. Please take the time to explore the ideas and promises each pair of candidates presents, and make sure the choice is your own. Engaging with the community is easy, and voting to show you care is even easier.

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.