Spoiled votes for Dean of Student’s question

The 560 votes were spoiled in the election for the position of Dean of Students. They could not be counted due to political commentaries written on the ballots or the ballots being ripped.
Students who voted on March 26 to 28 were given detailed instructions on how to fill out the ballots efficiently, said Stephan Herman, Chief Electoral Officer of the CSU. Herman went on to say in addition to marking down random political comments on their ballots, students also expressed their concerns involving the validity of the CSU resources.
“On the ballot it said specifically, ‘choose from the following, fill in the circle carefully. I don’t know if [the voters] were aware, but it was clear,” said Herman. He also confirmed that there have been no contestations or any requests for a re-count.
Another possible reason for spoiled votes was because some of the ballots were ripped, although Herman said most of the ripped ballots were still legible and counted. In order to keep privacy as a priority, voters were asked to tear off the number on their ballot, which matched the number on the receipt. Herman said there were different polling clerks and returning officers and that destroying the number on the ballot was just an extra step to ensure privacy.
The current Dean of Students, Donald Boisvert, was defeated by CSU interim President Patrice Blais. The November byelection had a question asking students if the position of dean of students should be an elected one.
Blais surprised
“I did not believe that as many students would come out to express their vote. Obviously I was really satisfied,” said Blais in response to the number of spoiled ballots.
Even if all the spoiled votes had been in favor of Boisvert, Blais points out that he would have won the election anyway. Without the 560 spoiled votes that did not count towards Blais or Boisvert, Blais rose to the top with 1,708 votes and Boisvert ended with 1,030 votes.
“The results of the election didn’t surprise me at all,” said Herman, although he refused to make any other comments on the outcome of the election.
Herman said as of now there is not much being done to prevent this sort of thing from happening in future elections. However, he hopes to see ballots with two receipts in the future so that votes can be counted accurately as well as confidentially.


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