To the Editor:
“Syverud has not captured our excitement in this race…” — yesterday’s Yale Daily News
It’s official: No one is excited about Steven Syverud.
Your endorsement article yesterday actually made a great case for Syverud’s rival, R. David Edelman. You found Edelman the most charismatic, the best in command of the issues, and the most able to inspire other YCC reps to perform at their potential.
When compared with your description of Syverud, your impression of Edelman seems that much more flattering. You say that you “were disappointed by Syverud’s ability to defend his platform under scrutiny” while Edelman was “at his most compelling” on the issues. Apparently, however, Syverud’s inability to defend his positions was not a problem because, as you conclude, “Syverud’s record speaks for itself.”
I agree: Syverud’s record does speak for itself, but it tells a different story. While your article praised Syverud’s financial aid resolution, what he hasn’t been telling voters is that the idea of writing the resolution wasn’t his; according to the YDN, the request came from the Yale Subcommittee on Admissions and Financial Aid. Aid reform isn’t a new issue, but for two and a half years Syverud didn’t give it much thought. It took a request from the administration — and the prospect of facing another presidential campaign with an empty resume — to motivate him. Now that this information has come to light, Syverud’s supporters are busy playing defense, arguing that he came up with some of the resolution’s ideas. But the fact that he took two and a half years to graft a few details onto the administration’s proposal is a liability, not a selling point.
Syverud’s record boils down to this: He has done too little too late on his one campaign issue and did a lackluster job on the Executive Board. That doesn’t make him qualified to be president.
In the end you decided that Syverud best embodies the current YCC, but Edelman would be a better leader — and you didn’t have the guts to choose Edelman’s leadership over Syverud’s uninspiring record. I hope the voters will be more courageous.
David Chernicoff ’07
April 11, 2005