Associated Students held their fall debates Monday before the campus was effectively shut down due to the wild fires.
Incumbent A.S. business senator Montana Pham and his political opponent, freshman Edward Kaiping, debated several student issues Monday morning such as the campus quality fee, the proposed Matador statue, the Big Show and other topics.
Their tendency to agree with each others’ answers and tangibly genuine concern for students stood in stark contrast to the current national political climate where politicians seem to care more for their campaign than their constituents.
Both blasted the proposed misuse of the campus quality fee and spoke of their intentions to use the increased funds to aid students in multiple ways, though at times the two mildly disagreed on just what was important for the Matadors.
The event moderator, Director of Elections Mazen Hafez, questioned both on what was indeed most beneficial, and perhaps more importantly, most desired by students.
The candidates differed in their understanding of what the statue would bring to the school.
Kaiping said he would not support what he deemed extravagant uses of money for such projects as the planned matador statue, while Pham was in favor of it.
Pham referenced surveys that said a majority of students were in support of the statue and made clear that much thought had gone into both the funding and intent of the statue. While Kaiping agreed that school spirit was of the utmost importance, he couldn’t reconcile to the $35,000 A.S.-fronted price tag.
A student could attend CSUN for 10 years on a full ride scholarship, Kaiping said, adding that it was a better way to spend the money.
Both urged student participation in school events and related the benefits of being an involved matador. When asked about their own attendance at CSUN sporting events, both had sparse experience.
The recent Big Show 8 also produced slight disagreement from the candidates.
Though a breakdown showing the number of CSUN students in attendance wasn’t available yet, Kaiping said the increased visibility and increase in student relations was reason enough to support the $150,000 venture and even possibly put on another spring semester show. Pham could not be appealed upon until reviewing the forthcoming breakdown, but he did make clear that he would not favor producing two shows a year unless the financial needs of other clubs and organizations were met.
Pham had more specific answers in regards to how he would bring about his proposals, but neither candidate hinted at anything ground-breaking.
Both considered campus security of the utmost importance and criticized the lack of security after 3 a.m.
‘Security in the dorms is silly and outdated,’ Kaiping said. ‘We pay a stupid amount of money. It needs to be reformed.’
Kaiping called for university-funded security that would be responsible to students and A.S. alike. Pham said he would urge the administration to increase funding and also called out the lack of regulations in the dorm.
Resident leaders don’t take on their responsibilities to help students, they do it to get dorm privileges, Pham said.
Student involvement, whether it be in the dorms, as part of a club or throughout campus, was championed by both candidates.
A.S. elections will be held on October 28 and 29 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.