After weeks of sensory overload on Ring Road, during which students were bombarded with food, flyers and images of Care Bears, and after the bitter battle that ensued between supporters and opponents of three student fee initiatives, the delayed results that were released last Tuesday were anticlimactic.
Measure S passed with 4,182 votes, 69.42 percent of the ballots cast. Though more than 52 percent of the votes cast for the other two referenda were ‘yes’ votes, neither the Campus Events referendum nor the Campus Activities to Revitalize Education referendum passed, failing to meet the 60 percent required to pass with only 3,087 and 2,996 votes, respectively.
After ASUCI’s Judicial Board ruled that candidates could not be disqualified for failing to attend an optional candidate meeting, ASUCI released the results for the contested at-large representative seats, which went to Jaclyn Baccaro, with 875 votes, and Ingrid Cruz with 909.
Michael Popov won the biological sciences representative seat with 382 votes, while Amy Maguire was elected as social ecology representative with 293 votes. Both newly-elected engineering representative Alden Holmes and information and computer sciences representative Chris Colwell ran unopposed and received 318 and 138 votes respectively. Oracio Sanchez won humanities representative with 74 votes. Daniel Santos, with 419 votes, beat out four other candidates for the social sciences representative seat.
Student reaction to the election outcome was mixed.
‘I’m glad that iCE didn’t pass, because it would have been a waste of money,’ said a third-year economics major who wished to remain anonymous. ‘But C.A.R.E. should have passed, because it was a good measure. A lot of funding for outreach programs and clubs was lost by budget cuts last year, and it would have been a good idea to have funding again.’
Ahana Sandhu, a second-year biological sciences major, shared disappointment in the failure of C.A.R.E.
‘I’m kind of bummed that C.A.R.E. didn’t pass,’ Sandhu said. ‘They were going to release a database of all the tests for future reference and offer free printing for $6 per quarter, which would have been nice instead of constantly paying for a card to print.’
Tiffany Lee, a fourth-year social ecology major, offered a number of reasons for the outcome.
‘First of all, the Measure S campaign was huge,’ Lee said. ‘You really couldn’t escape the ads because they were everywhere you went. It was endorsed by Associated Students of UC Irvine, and so there was little outright criticism of it.’
Lee also noted the impact of the New University’s editorial position, which supported Measure S and opposed the other referenda.
‘A lot of students chose to vote based on what they read or what someone else said instead of researching themselves,’ Lee said. ‘No one really knew too much except the people campaigning.’
This allowed for misinformation to spread, according to Lee.
‘There were a lot of rumors about the referenda, especially about C.A.R.E., and how it wouldn’t follow through,’ Lee said. ‘Students were worried that the money wouldn’t go for education.’
While some students had clear opinions on the measures, many others felt they were not well-informed enough about the measures to make educated choices.
‘I voted only for Measure S, because people cared enough to explain what it was. I chose ‘abstain’ for the rest,’ said a third-year electrical engineering major who also wished to remain anonymous.