Attacks continue at final debate

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By Don McHoull

Faced with criticism that his bonds-for-bursaries plan wouldn’t work, presidential candidate Dave MacLean ducked the issue at least Thursday’s debate.

In place of what had been the main plunk of his campaign, a glum-faced MacLean offered up a new vision of making the school more fun.

“The most important thing, I think, is students having fun on campus without help,” he said, mentioning ideas such as holding athletic competitions between course unions.

At the previous debate, MacLean had told students he could create hundreds of bursaries by investing RyeSAC’s money in risk-free governments bonds, which would earn about 10 per cent interest a year.

In last week’s Eyeopener, financial experts were quoted saying MacLean’s plan was unrealistic, because government bonds earned far less than ten per cent a year.

In last week’s Eyeopener, financial experts were quoted saying MacLean’s plan was unrealistic, because government bonds earned far less than ten per cent a year.

While not mentioning the bond plan directly, MacLean did deny using made up numbers.

“I’ve not admitted that I’ve been wrong on any numbers,” he said.

Without mentioning bursaries, MacLean said RyeSAC money should be reinvested in helping students.

“That $3 million [in surplus RyeSAC funds] in there, no matter what,” he said. “It’s going to accumulate, no matter what, so that money should be spent.”

MacLean took some shots over his bond plan.

“I’m not going to use false numbers to win votes or do anything,” said rival presidential candidate Ken Marciniec.

Another issue that carried over from the first debate was the right of an anti-abortion group to exist on campus.

Marciniec again stated his opposition to letting the group have official status.

“I don’t think we should have groups that are eager to take away human rights,” he said.

MacLean accused his opponent of stifling free speech.

“It’s very hypocritical of people who say they want to make voices heard, to shut down any voices they don’t agree with,” said MacLean.

Unlike the first debate, vice-presidential candidates also got some attention.

Rebeca Rose, a first-year journalism student, asked vice-president finance and services candidate Ronney Young about remarks he had made to the campus press admitting to a womanizing past.

“That was the past, I live in present, I look to the future,” said impassioned Young as he rose to defend himself.

Young grew even more intense when asked about his campaign poster, in which he is depicted holding a phone to his ear.

“I want to know who you’re talking to on your cellphone in that picture,” said Ben Mui, a third-year business student.

“I don’t even own a cellphone,” snapped an indignant Young. “Next time you ask a question, get your facts right, because I don’t want to answer a stupid question.”

For the record, Young said after the debate that what he was using is a cordless telephone.

The debate also took a bizarre turn when several students asked Marciniec about why he kept his door in the RyeSAC office closed.

“Most of the time my door is open but sometimes my office door is closed for various reasons,” said a puzzled-looking Marciniec.

MacLean took a strong stance against door closing.

“I would literally take it off the hinges and burn it,” he said of the door to RyeSAC president’s office.

Carlos Flores, a candidate for vice-president on Marciniec’s left wing slate, was asked why he had signed up with the Young Tories, a conservative political group.

Flores said that he had only signed up to receive information about the group, to learn where it stood on student issues.

“It’s not that I necessarily endorse this group,” he said.

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