Kudos to the News for highlighting voting issues

To the Editor:

As leaders of the coalition of Yale College Democrats and Students for a New American Politics PAC, which registered students and worked to get out the vote on campus, we want to thank the Yale Daily News for highlighting the voting irregularities that took place Tuesday. Despite the fact that every completed voter registration form we collected was turned in to the New Haven Registrar of Voters before the deadline, it appears that a clerical error by the Registrar’s Office resulted in at least one student’s being turned away from the polls. This is unacceptable. So, too, were last-minute polling place changes made with little notification that confused many students. The News has shined a spotlight on these issues that is essential for fixing them, and we will follow up with the New Haven Registrar of Voters to make sure they never happen again.

In the meantime, we want to thank everyone who voted and all the volunteers who made it possible to achieve record voter turnout on Tuesday despite these difficulties. From the huge on-campus turnout to the 100 students who canvassed in close congressional districts last weekend to the 1,500 “get out the vote” phone calls students made into those same districts on Tuesday, this election cycle was a testament to what students can achieve when we get involved. Just ask Democrat Joe Courtney, who wrested Connecticut’s second congressional district from Republican hands by fewer than 200 votes, pending a recount. If Yale students had not made thousands of phone calls and knocked on thousands of doors in that district, that slim margin of victory might have disappeared. Or ask voters in Timothy Dwight College — after student volunteers learned that the college’s polling place had been switched at the last minute, they rushed to notify students in TD. At the end of the day, more than 90 percent of registered Democrats and unaffiliated voters in TD had turned out to vote.

One of the many great things about Election 2006 is that it showed that students are active, we’re involved, and we’re making change. If we keep this same positive, engaged spirit as we go forward, there is no limit to what we can accomplish.

Brendan Gants and Marissa Levendis

Nov. 9

Gants, a junior in Morse, is the president of the Yale College Democrats. Levendis, a senior in Calhoun, is the executive director of Students for a New American Politics Political Action Committee.

Business community looks forward to Campus Cash

To the Editor:

As representatives of the New Haven business community, we would like to take the opportunity to say how excited we are about Campus Cash at Yale. The current 18 percent transaction fee associated with the Flex program is unsustainable, and we are glad that the new system being considered by the Yale administration will make the program affordable for us and available to the undergraduate community. As we depend on the business that Yale costumers bring to us, we are delighted that the Yale student body and the Yale College Council have taken such an interest in the issue, and we hope that the Yale administration will implement the new system in a way that benefits both us and our customers. We cannot wait for the arrival of Campus Cash!

Prita S. Patel

owner, Bread Star Bakery

Rose Prifitera

owner, Naples Pizza LLC

David Kim

manager, Gourmet Heaven

Naomi Choy

owner, Subway

Jason Congdon

owner, Bulldog Burrito

David Roosth ’09

Daniel Seifert ’09

Bill Fishel ’08

Nov. 8

Roosth and Seifert are representatives to the Yale College Council from Saybrook and Timothy Dwight colleges, respectively. Fishel is the president of the Committee for Campus-wide Activities.