Ballots for The College students reset due to technical issue

243 students voted on incomplete ballots in USGT executive and senate races early Tuesday morning

A senatorial candidate for The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences on the Tempe campus did not appear on the ballot for the 243 students part of The College who voted before 6:30 a.m. Tuesday, due to technical difficulties. 

"It has come to our attention that somehow the ballot from our IT office was not saved correctly and a candidate was missing The College senate seats," said an email from Elizabeth Rosenkrantz, assistant director for Associated Students of ASU. "Your ballot has been reset, and you will need to revote." 

Undergraduate Student Government Tempe notified students of the mistake as well, instructing them to vote again before the window closes on Wednesday at 11:59 p.m. 

The email to students said that ID numbers, rather than names, were used to contact them directly.

Clay Robinson, The College senatorial candidate and a freshman studying economics and civic and economic thought and leadership, said he wanted to vote as early as he could but when he logged on to the ballot and didn't see his name, he decided to wait. 

"I wasn't angry or upset," Robinson said, revealing he contacted USGT and the elections commissioner as soon as possible.

Robinson said that he understood technical difficulties happen and the elections department's response was "adequate." 

Whether he wins a senate seat or not, Robinson said that he will reach out to whoever it takes to reform the elections code to reflect the mishap and other possible hurdles that come with online voting. 

"I was surprised we don't have anything specific," Robinson said, mentioning how he wants the updated code to address the timeline of online voting as well as common computer errors that could hinder voting. 

Due to COVID-19 concerns canceling in-person classes, delaying elections and effectively asking candidates to campaign digitally, the last two weeks have been crazy, Robinson said, thanking the elections department for trying to run it as smooth as possible. 

After the first emails were sent to students, Students for Socialism at ASU called the mishap "disappointing."

The group endorsed the United Voices for ASU coalition on the first day of campaigning and mentioned on Twitter that "potentially dozens" of students who had already voted for the coalition would have to do so again. 

Four of the seven candidates with the coalition are campaigning for the four seats reserved for The College students. 

Campaigning began on March 30 and voting started on April 14. The window closes on April 15 and results will be announced the next day through Zoom. 


Reach the reporter at pjhanse1@asu.edu and follow @piperjhansen on Twitter. 

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