Michigan Student Assembly presidential candidates will be facing
off in three rounds of debate at the WOLV TV studio tonight.
Students First candidate Jason Mironov, Kate Stenvig of the Defend
Affirmative Action Party and independent candidate Tim Moore will
field questions from moderators from WOLV TV, the Michigan Daily
and possibly WCBN Radio.
“There will be three rounds of debate,” said LSA
junior Laura Averitt, WOLV-TV news director. “The first round
of questions will be open to all candidates and will address
extremely general topics about what the candidates would like to
In the second round, the questions will directly address
individual candidates and focus on their previous statements in the
debate. The third round will allow candidates to make any rebuttals
and closing comments.
The debate is not open to the public, but students can watch it
on Saturday, Sunday and Monday at 10 p.m. on channel 22 for Comcast
subscribers and channel 70 in the residence halls.
There was some concern among candidates that tonight’s
debate may not be impartial due to the fact that the current MSA
president, Angela Galardi of the Students First party, was given a
list of specific questions that will be directed toward individual
candidates. Averitt, who is serving as a debate moderator, e-mailed
the questions to Galardi.
Averitt said Galardi requested that she have input in the
questions as a person who participated in the debate last year.
“(We did this) so that we could get feedback from someone who
has debated before and then WOLV would make any revisions,”
Averitt said, adding that she will e-mail the questions to all
Galardi said that she did not open the attachment that contained
the questions for fear that it would undermine the fairness of the
debate. She also said she did not know why Averitt e-mailed the
questions, but said she thought that “the reason why they had
sent them to me was because I expressed some concern over the
questions asked last year.”
The presidential candidates reacted with discontent.
“It’s illegal according to the (Central Student
Judiciary),” said independent candidate Tim Moore.
“That’s obviously not fair,” said Kate
Stenvig, “Don’t they think that people will find
Mironov, who is also the student general counsel for MSA, said
he has not seen the questions and originally was not aware that
Galardi had received them. Other MSA officers on Students First
also reportedly were not made aware of the e-mail.