Problems with Route Y send all five teams to BYUSA election finals

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    By EMILY CANNON

    Students waited anxiously in the Wilkinson Student Center Terrace for the primary election results Monday night.

    Forty-five minutes later they were still waiting.

    When the candidates finally came through the BYUSA office doors, cheers and chants broke out.

    But no one knew what to expect.

    And certainly not this.

    After a 50-minute delay, students waiting for the Winter 2000 BYUSA primary election results found out that all five candidate teams would advance to the finals.

    The decision came after a meeting behind closed doors with the election committee co-chairs and all of the candidates.

    Brenley Lewis, elections co-chair, said the decision was a result of difficulties in accessing Route Y over the weekend.

    “We didn’t feel that the last few days of campaigning were reflected in the votes,” Lewis said.

    The candidate teams were given two options: to extend the primaries by one day or allow all five teams to run in the finals. They did not receive the primary results until after making a decision, Lewis said.

    All of the teams are advancing, but they will start over with zero votes and have less than a week until the final elections close, Lewis said.

    Candidates shared mixed reactions to the final decision. Some said they are frustrated with the turnout of events. Some are excited of the possibilities that lie ahead.

    David Larsen, a presidential candidate running with Dana Zinke, said this situation applies even more pressure, because there may be more split votes.

    His running mate, Zinke, said there will be advantages to the decision.

    “Hopefully, we’ll be a lot more motivated to get out there and work harder. We’ll be able to get our voices out to even more people,” Zinke said.

    Adam Barlow, a presidential candidate running with Katherine Fairbanks, said their team plans on continuing the same campaign as they did in the primaries.

    “We’re just as excited. We’re running the same campaign with the same ethics,” Barlow said.

    However, the decision to allow all five teams to run brings up some further issues.

    Brandon Christensen, 23, a senior from Idaho Falls, Idaho, majoring in information systems, is the SAC chairman and said the decision may bring problems.

    “With five teams, it’s likely there will be a split in the votes and no one will have a majority. It may be questionable as to whether or not the BYUSA president will have the support of the student body,” Christensen said.

    The final election voting is scheduled to begin at 12:01 a.m. on Feb. 15, but reconfiguring the server for Route Y is not complete, Lewis said.

    Once the final elections begin, candidates will have several days to reach voters. The 2000 BYUSA president and executive vice-president will be announced at the beginning of Comedy Night in the WSC Ballroom on Friday at 9 p.m.

    See related stories:

    BYUSA candidates announced 2/8/2000

    BYUSA polls open to mixed emotions 2/8/2000

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