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Vote Wagner-Hampton on Tuesday
The Voice editorial board endorses Matt Wagner (SFS ’11) and Emmanuel Hampton (COL ’11) in this year’s Georgetown University Student Association executive election. Although incumbents Calen Angert (MSB ’11) and Jason Kluger (MSB ’11) have demonstrated strong leadership this year on a number of projects and proposed a promising agenda for next year, their indifferent support for the GUSA Senate’s Finance and Appropriation Committee’s takeover of the Student Activities Fee allocation process demonstrated indefensibly poor judgment. Wagner and Emmanuel’s strong opposition to the recent power grab, by contrast, sets them apart as the one pair of candidates with the necessary understanding of, and concern about, student club funding.
As the former chair of the senate’s Finance and Appropriations Committee, Wagner has an unrivaled knowledge of the funding process. Under his leadership, advisory boards and GUSA worked together in a collaborative, cooperative manner. Wagner pushed for much-needed reform of the Student Activities Commission without alienating the other advisory boards. This first-hand experience has given Wagner the ability to critically analyze current Finance and Appropriations Chair Nick Troiano’s (COL ’11) funding reform plan, which he has opposed as ill-conceived change. If elected, Wagner will serve as a much-needed check on the Finance and Appropriations Committee, and push to repeal the most irresponsible aspects of Troiano’s reform program.
Unfortunately, Angert and Kluger have not demonstrated this capacity for independent analysis of club funding issues. While they have been successful in realizing many of their smaller projects—such as creating a subsidized LSAT preparation course and starting a program allowing certified students to drive the SafeRides van—they have dropped the ball on funding reform, the most important issue GUSA has taken up this year. Instead of taking an active role, they passively allowed Troiano and other members of the Finance and Appropriations Committee to dictate the terms of funding reform.
It’s a pity Angert and Kluger have taken such an uncritical approach to such a central issue, especially since they have the proven ability to push their projects through Georgetown’s bureaucracy, as well as an appealing agenda for a potential second term. Wagner and Emanuel Hampton would do well to add some of Angert and Kluger’s most reasonable and actionable agenda items—such as installing more powerstrips in classrooms and implementing a Zipcar program for students under 21 years of age—to their already strong platform.