Union Goes to the Polls

The pressure mounts on election day at the Union as the two presidential candidates go head to head.

assange fenster harry joel julian prance president society Union

The clock is ticking for Union candidates, as voting takes place today.

Harry Prance, the ‘outsider’ presidential candidate, caused quite a stir at Thursdays hustings, giving his speech in full drag, prompting questions of whether his campaign was a joke.

Prance went on to highlight the seriousness of his candidature by laying down key policies such as: an elected Women’s Officer position with a vote on the Standing Committee (so that they would have a say in issues such as whether speakers like Julian Assange should come to the Union), and tackling the current state of nepotism within the society and the resulting apathy of its members.

Fenster, drew on his background as a debater, outlining his desire for the rift between the debating and administrational sides of the Union to be broken down, as well as a No Platform vote to be put to members.

When questioned, Fenster confessed that, in the recent Standing Committee secret ballot, he voted pro-Assange. He told the Chamber that it was because he “wanted to look him in the eyes and ask ‘Are you a rapist?'” Fenster also stated that his top priority would be to replace the moveable wheelchair access ramp outside the building with a permanent fixture.

The election has been a bumpy ride for some, with Prance’s campaign being hindered by a string of accusations of electoral malpractice. An original campaign poster depicting the head of the opposition candidate, Joel Fenster, under Prance’s foot was held to be ‘intimidating’. The poster was removed as soon as the complaint was lodged.

The MS Paint masterpiece that cost Prance dearly

Further to this, an unofficial campaign poster, with the caption “Vote Prance – he’s not a racist”, was held to imply that Prance believed Fenster, to be a racist.

Following Assange’s cancellation of his Q&A session, a post on Prance’s Facebook event was held to be a lie to further his candidacy. The post read: “Thanks in part to the pressure put on the Union Campaign by Prance for Pres, we’ve shown that ‘outsiders’ can make a difference, that not everything the Union clique decide to do, they can get away with. It is not my place, at this stage in the election, to comment on the ‘technical difficulties’ that stopped Assange speaking.”

As a result, Prance has been docked a total of 20% of his first preference votes.

Out of the other roles up for grabs, only the position of Executive Officer is contested, with only one candidate for Ents Officer, Speakers Officer and Treasurer, and only four out of six positions being run for on the Supplementary Committee.

Voting is open to Union members and can be done online or at the Cambridge Union Society until 6pm.