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IUSG candidates discuss gun violence, sexual misconduct, greek life at town hall



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Vision for IUSG candidates listen to Mackenzie North, the presidential candidate for Bridge IU, during the IU Student Government town hall on March 19 in the Global and International Studies Building. Students were able to ask and submit questions, ranging from gun violence to greek life, for the two tickets to answer. Jake An Buy Photos

Discussing topics varying from gun violence to greek life, both of the executive tickets for IU Student Government kicked off the final week before elections Tuesday with a town hall.

The tickets fielded questions from students, the Election Commission and moderator Paul Helmke, three-term mayor of Fort Wayne, Indiana, and professor at the O'Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs .

Vision for IUSG discussed the possibility of renaming Jordan Hall, adding a suicide hotline to students’ Crimson Cards and the creation of a Middle and Near Eastern Cultural Center.

Bridge IU wants to increase accessibility of student government, implement formal bystander training during New Student Orientation and bring students together to make the campus feel smaller.

“There is a disconnect between greek life and this university,” said Bridge vice presidential candidate junior Mihir Barot .

A member of Sigma Alpha Mu, he proposed open forums with greek life leadership.

Vision aims to clarify the relationship between the university and greek life, said Vision vice presidential candidate junior Matt Stein, who is member of Alpha Epsilon Pi.

Teams answered questions specific to their campaigns and also reflected similar thoughts on certain topics. When asked about gun violence, both Bridge and Vision echoed that their first steps would be asking students their opinions and following those opinions into legislature.

“We are here to serve students,” said Vision congressional secretary candidate sophomore Mackenzie Austin .

She said the ticket does not identify with political groups themselves as their purpose is to reflect student voices alone.

Bridge repeated this thought. Presidential candidate junior Mackenzie North said the first step for Bridge would be conducting student surveys and holding town halls.

The town hall itself allowed students to interact with candidates, a main tenet of each campaign.

“Students attend to have these questions answered and be better informed about the candidates before the election so that they know who to vote for,” Election Commission Chair Hannah Eaton said.  

One of the questions submitted asked the tickets to state one reason why students should vote for their opponents.

“Bridge has been open, honest and accepting” Stein said.

Bridge congressional secretary candidate Megan Miller applauded the amount of work and effort Vision has put into creating its policies.

Both teams said at the end of the day, student government exists to support student voice.

Elections will be March 27 and 28. Students will vote from a link sent through email.

Watch the town hall here:


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