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Simonhoff, Casher set for run-off

Disqualified candidate appeals decision, could change election results

 by Kyle Snow
 published on Friday, March 2, 2007

Casher (above), Simonhoff (below)/issues/news/700100
Casher (above), Simonhoff (below)


Liz Simonhoff and Shawn Casher won the Undergraduate Student Government general presidential elections, but a disqualified candidate could derail their trip to next week's run-off elections.

Simonhoff and Casher received the highest number of votes in the general election held Tuesday and Wednesday.

But presidential candidate Chris Murray and his vice presidential candidates Kevin King and Eric Hirsch - who were disqualified this week for not turning in an expense report on time - appealed their disqualification to the ASASU Supreme Court, said elections director Matt Cicinelli.

The ASASU Supreme Court will vote on the matter today, Cicinelli said.

If the disqualification is not overturned, Simonhoff and Casher will move on to the run-offs Monday and Tuesday.

Simonhoff received 38 percent of the votes, while Casher earned 24.9 percent of the 3,606 votes cast in the election.

Candidates must earn more than 50 percent of the vote to win the election.

Presidential candidate Craig Zoebisch received 24.5 percent of the vote. Candidates Mike Barney received 8.4 percent. Despite their disqualification, Murray and his ticket received 4.2 percent of the votes.

"I think the most important thing is putting the focus back on students, and that's what we did," Simonhoff said after the results were announced.

Simonhoff, who is running with Alex Pasco and Chris Gustafson as her vice presidents, said she was humbled by the results but will continue to campaign.

"We will continue to communicate to students that we are experienced and know what we're doing," Simonhoff said.

Casher said he is thrilled about being in the run-offs with his running mates Darlene Menjivar and Heather Hamel. He attributes it to the students' not wanting anymore broken promises.

"Students showed they are sick of all the broken promises and mandatory fees from student government," Casher said.

He said they would continue telling students about the issues and appeal to the logic of the students and what students care about.

Zoebisch said he was disappointed that an incumbent who did little during her first term made it to the run-off, referring to Simonhoff's time as vice president.

Zoebisch said when he went around campaigning to students on campus, about eight out of 10 asked what USG was.

"That's just sad in itself," Zoebisch said. "But I'm not disappointed about losing because Casher and I are basically on the same page."

Simonhoff said the fact that students don't know USG is deceptive because not everyone knows abbreviations for the various organizations on campus.

"If you asked a student about the undergraduate student government, most of them would be able to tell you they represent the student body," Simonhoff said.

Run-off results will be announced Wednesday.

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