MSA presidential hopefuls debate campaign platforms

Shabina Khatri
TONY DING/Daily
Michigan Student Assembly presidential candidates Jon Clifton of the University Party, Angela Galardi of the Students First Party and Kate Stenvig of the Defend Affirmative Action Party participate in their first debate.

Debates over race-conscious admissions and war with Iraq have kept the campus abuzz for months, and as elections draw closer for candidates of the Michigan Student Assembly, the presidential nominees have taken these issues head-on.

In a televised debate, Students First Party candidate Angela Galardi, University Party candidate Jon Clifton and Defend Affirmative Action Party candidate Kate Stenvig fielded an hour’s worth of questions about improving campus life, the University’s admissions policies and MSA-related issues. The debate took place in Angell Hall Saturday.

Speaking before a roomful of party members and students, the candidates answered individual questions and then challenged one another in an open forum. “I think the debate was successful,” Stenvig said. “I would always like more time to talk, but it was run in a fair way.”

During the debate, Stenvig summarized the basic tenet of the DAAP platform – safeguarding affirmative action in order to maintain an equal and integrated society. But she said while much of the party’s work goes toward organizing an April rally in Washington to defend the University’s admissions policies, DAAP still focuses on improving campus life.

“We are trying to make MSA a student government that has power that can set precedents and fight for students’ rights, which include all the things that the other parties are working on, like facilities on campus, Entr

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