There are many talented individuals who would like to serve as your next Central Student Government leaders. In fact, we believe that when it comes to values, character and the desire to truly make a difference for University students, those of us who are running for office have more similarities than differences. We view our opponents as worthy competitors, not adversaries. We genuinely respect all who are competing to lead CSG, represent your interests and give you a strong voice in student affairs. We believe our differences are best illustrated by vision and ideas, not through adversarial engagement. Instead of “going negative,” which seems to be the easy path to distract from the real issues in today’s competitive world, it’s necessary to generate healthy debate over matters of true importance. It’s sad, really. We simply won’t go there, and we hope it’s an example that all will follow. As your only independent candidates for CSG president and vice president, Scott Christopher and Ethan Michaeli, respectively, are campaigning on ideas — a full, independent platform of ideas with equal importance on plans to get them done.

We recognize and share many of our opponents’ goals, and we also have some very critical objectives that are unique to our platform. Reform of the University’s Counseling and Psychological Services, returning power back to the student organizations and the safest campus are three key initiatives within our platform. You can check out our entire platform on our website.

However, everyone has great ideas about moving forward for next year. We hail Mike Proppe and Bobby Dishell of youMich for moving forward the student organization sorting hat, a part of their platform that links students to clubs of interest. It’s definitely something that we would’ve loved as freshmen. momentUM’s Nick Swider and Jill Clancy have made huge strides reconnecting to students, especially freshmen. It’s always gratifying to see Nick taking big steps during his first year on campus. Chris Osborn and Haley Sakwa from forUM offer a progressive platform, touching some key areas for the University’s success. Personally, we can’t wait to have more fresh and sustainable food on campus. Finally, the Defend Affirmative Action Party is pushing forward an important issue on campus. Its executive candidates realize that Michigan isn’t as diverse as it claims to be, and they’re making strides to bring a greater voice within CSG for diverse and underrepresented students.

We want to salute and hail every one of our peers in this election. We’re thrilled to be competing with such great individuals, and I hope we can all work together next year. As we said during the debate, we pledge to work with every candidate no matter the result of this election — because what we can do as two people is nothing compared to what we can all do together.

As we move into this busy week, I encourage everyone to become informed on the great candidates that are running, and, most importantly, to vote! This is the time that we truly bring CSG back to each and every student as 10 dedicated candidates hoping to change the University for the better.

Scott Christopher is an LSA junior. Ethan Michaeli is an LSA freshman.

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