If friends, family, and Lil Jon haven’t yet convinced you to register to vote or get an absentee ballot, now – yes, right now! – is the time to make a plan to vote.
If you want to vote in Middletown, you MUST re-register, even if you registered in Middletown last year! This is because your voting district and poll location are determined by your on-campus street address – NOT your mailing address at 45 Wyllys. If you have a valid DMV ID from Connecticut, the process is fast and all online, and it must be done by Tuesday, October 21. If you don’t have a valid DMV ID from Connecticut, the Registrar of Voters will need to receive your form by mail by October 21, meaning you would have had to send it today, so instead you’ll take a 10-minute stroll to the Registrar’s Office (245 deKoven Drive) to deliver it in person by Tuesday, October 28. On Election Day (November 4), the Office of Community Service will have vans running between Usdan and the various voting polls. If you hail from Connecticut and are registered for your non-Wesleyan home, you need to either vote by absentee ballot or drive to your local voting poll. (Register here!)
The registration deadline has passed in several places, including New York and Massachusetts, but there’s still time to register by mail or online in a few states, such as California. Some states are still accepting in-person registrations, so do some research if you’re heading home for fall break. Of course, if you’ve registered in another state and can’t be there on November 4, you’ll need to apply for an absentee ballot and, once you’ve received the ballot, send it so it arrives by Election Day (though this deadline changes state by state).
Election Season brings with it questions of not only how to vote but also why, especially when it comes to voting in Middletown, and especially when it comes to midterm elections. If you don’t get warm-and-fuzzies from just “fulfilling your civic duty,” here’s some food for thought that might pull you to the polls:
From Ben Florsheim ’14:
Today is Election Day, and there are a number of important local races in Middletown. For the first time ever, Connecticut voters can register in person on the day of the election and vote, so whether you are already a registered Middletown voter or not, it’s time to inform yourself and cast a ballot.
The Office of Community Service is providing shuttles from 9 AM until 8 PM to all polling locations that serve Wesleyan students, as well as City Hall where new voters can register and vote. Shuttles will be leaving from Wyllys Ave outside Usdan.
So what’s going on? Mayor Dan Drew (D) faces only token opposition this year, from registered nurse John Kilian, the founder of the Middletown Realistic Balance Party. However, the man who Drew defeated two years ago, former mayor Sebastian Giuliano (R), is mounting a campaign for City Council, along with 7 other Republicans and 8 Democrats. Also in the mix for council are two Republican incumbents who were denied renomination by their party and are now running as independents, along with local activist Fred Carroll, running on the Realistic Balance line. The current council composition is 8 Democrats and 4 Republicans; the Democrats are hoping to preserve their majority, while the Republicans are gunning for a comeback, even if they didn’t put forward a candidate for the city’s top job.
In Wesleyan-related news, Steven Kovach ’13 (D) is a candidate for Board of Education, and biology professor Stephen Devoto (D) is a candidate for the Planning and Zoning Commission. The sample ballot has the names and party affiliations of all candidates, and is worth perusing before you head to the polls. Further information can be found on the 90s-tastic websites for the local Democratic and Republican parties.
Local politics may not be flashy, but these are the races where every vote truly counts, and as community stakeholders like everyone else, Wesleyan students have the right to be involved in the process. So, whoever you end up supporting for the many races being contested this year, DON’T FORGET TO VOTE!
Date: TODAY, Tuesday, November 5
Time: 9 AM – 8 PM
Reveal yourself, Trustee-Candidates-Who-Didn’t-Make-It-Onto-The-Ballot. We know you’re out there.
Andrew Bleeker ’07 was one of 40 nominees for the Board of Trustees—and is now one of six candidates on the ballot for the Board of Trustees.
You know what it’s like to run for the WSA (it’s okay, we were all freshmen once), but do you know what it’s like to run for the Board of Trustees, Wesleyan’s most elite secret society?
According to a recent post on WesConnect, six alumni are in the process of finding out, each vying for a chance to spend sunny weekends in September, November, and May perched up in the Daniel Family Commons sipping Dom Pérignon, Making Important Decisions About Relle Important Stuff, and occasionally asking Public Safety to kick out uninvited student activists. (Or maybe they’re just running for the opportunity to kick it with West Wing star and Wesleyan trustee Bradley Whitford ’81.) The candidates on the ballot, as they present themselves on WesConnect, include:
Interested in getting more involved with an environmental group on campus next year? You’re in luck: EON (Environmental Organizer’s Network) is searching for three new coordinators:
The responsibilities of coordinators include planning and facilitating a few large EON meetings a semester as well as organizing resources for the many separate environmental groups on campus. You will also get to write the weekly Green Scene newsletter, meet with the sustainability coordinator, attend SAGES meetings and more. The position is not an enormous commitment but can also be a great opportunity to spread your message of sustainability to the Wesleyan community, really it can be whatever you want it to be. Plus, you get to send lots of emails.
O Giant Joint, where art thou?
Someone actually voted for Lil B this year, so I don’t feel bad using this image again.
Our long, national nightmare is over. Following an interview by schmox that rivals the University’s Reaccreditation Self-Study for length, the results of the WSA elections are in: Nicole Updegrove ’14 and Andrew Trexler ’14 will be taking seat as president and vice-president, respectively. (For anyone keeping score at home, this makes Updegrove the first female president of the WSA since Emily Polak ’05 served during the 2004-2005 academic year.) Write-in champion Giant Joint made an especially meager showing this year, receiving only 25 votes for president and 29 votes for vice-president (unless you count those three votes for “big blunt”) after a briefly resurrected social media presence:
As is pretty much traditional at this point, here are some of the most noteworthy write-in votes from the election. You can peruse the full results for yourself here.
Alicia Gansley ’15 and Democracy Matters managed to dig themselves out of that corporate snow pile:
Democracy Matters is a nationwide student movement focusing on eliminating the effect of big corporate money on the American political process and putting power back in the hands of the people.
Come join us to discuss plans for this semester including speakers, film screenings, and demonstrations. We are very open to collaborative events and new ideas!
Please note that this event was rescheduled to Tuesday afternoon due to snow-based complications on Monday evening. Email agansley(at)wes with any questions or comments.
Date: Tomorrow, February 12th
Place: Albritton 004
Cost: No cost – only the benefits of a free democracy!
EON, the Environmental Organizers’ Network, is working to get back on its feet after a year’s hiatus. So far this semester, EON has met to map out its form, scope, leadership, and ideals. Tomorrow (Monday) at 4:00 PM in Usdan 108, EON will reconvene to further these discussions, as well as elect the next coordinators to see it through next semester.
Anyone interested in sustainability, environmental organizing, and climate justice issues is invited and encouraged to participate in the meeting and elections.
If you would like to run for one of the three coordinator positions, please fill out this survey by noon on Monday.
EON, the environmental organizers’ network, is looking for three enthusiastic, well-organized coordinators for next semester. The coordinators will plan the big network-wide meetings that will take place about three times per semester, facilitate discussion at those gatherings, and essentially keep the fire burning for EON. No background in environmental activism is necessary, and we encourage anyone who feels strongly about helping organize environmental events and initiatives to apply!
We know that this is a busy time for people, but if you could briefly answer the three questions on the survey by Sunday night, you’ll have a little time at the election meeting (Monday, December 10th at 4 PM) to elaborate. This application just gets you on the ballot. Also, your application questions will be accessible by all EON members to give them a sense of who’s running before the election.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Marj Dodson ’13 (mdodson@wes), Oliver James ’14 (ojames@wes) or Haley Greenberg ’14 (hgreenberg@wes).
Know a friend, classmate, roommate, friendcrush, or lover who you think would make a good coordinator? Let us know and we’ll work on getting them involved!
Here’s the application. (Note: you need a wesleyan.edu account to open it.)
From Grant “The Tech” Tanenbaum ’15:
Interested in running for WSA? Here’s how:
As a reminder, the process for WSA elections starts tomorrow! Here is the timeline:
- TODAY, Monday, Nov. 25: Information session with WSA Executive Committee 110, 4:10-4:45pm – if you can’t make it, email firstname.lastname@example.org for information
- TODAY, Monday, Nov. 25: Petitions will be distributed at info session, and via email
- Thursday, Nov. 29: Petitions due in the WSA office (first floor of Usdan, next to cafe), and 150 word blurbs to email@example.com
- Thursday, Nov. 29: Quick meeting about campaigning and elections, time and place TBA
- Monday, Dec. 3 to Friday, Dec. 7: Voting is OPEN!
All students are encouraged to run, so that all different voices and opinions will be represented! Email wsa(at)wesleyan(dot)edu with any questions!
UPDATE: Download the petition here.