LIVE BLOG: PULP Does Repselect 2016

Welcome to the first Pulp live blog of #repselect 2016.

Some A Frames Lied (shock!) - 7pm

As nominations for Vice President are called, two nominations are announced - a single for Lilly Campbell (of SAlt), and a joint nomination for James Gibson and Ella Bickley (of SLS). After a few seconds, Michael Elliott strolled nonchalantly down the Professorial Boardroom floor to submit the nomination for Ed McCann (of the Mod Libs (Ignite), who was initially introduced by Returning Officer Paulene as 2014 board director, Ed McMahon). McCann was unconventionally touted by the Stand Up team as VP on their A-frames.

Bickley-Gibson spoke first, starting ceremoniously with “friends, comrades…”. They broached topics such as free education, “unfair” PATH internship programs, and education cuts. Lilly Campbell spoke next, admonishing Stand Up councillors for working with the Liberals during the election, as well as condemning federal Australian politics and Nauru, describing them as “fucking disgraceful”. Finally, Ed McCann took the stage to whoops, stomps and “we want Ed” from student Unity. Ed claimed he had experienced “a lot of different perspectives” while campaigning as a Liberal. He also compared himself to Trump (which was pretty funny).

After a minute during voting, Lilly Campbell withdrew her nomination, leaving it between SLS and student Labor backed Liberals. Bickley-Gibson won the Vice President position, 16-17, confirming the Grassroots-SLS (Power) majority.

A Lot of People Yelled - 7:35pm

As General Secretary is called, Daniel Ergas and Isabella Pytka are nominated from Power, and Dylan Williams and Alex Fitton are nominated from Stand Up and the Liberals. With Fitton now running against Power candidates, we can expect a shift in majority, and all votes are now left up to the #stupol gods. The Ergas-Pytka took the stage first, beginning by acknowledging that General Secretary is not an “entry level position” and asked all members of council to vote with their consciences and not their faction. Before the Williams-Fitton team took the floor, a the Stand Up/ Liberal block claimed tat Fitton would sign a statutory declaration the following day to recognise that they do not identify as a cis male. This means that because both teams have non-cis identifying members, they are both eligible. Subsequent to publishing, PULP has heard rumours that Fitton has no intention to sign the stat dec. As Fitton approaches the front desk, a member of Stand Up yells “go the boys”. An awkward silence follows.

There's going to be a stat dec signed that a candidate doesn't identify as a cis male. Fucking hell #repselect

— ari (@aryan__g) October 19, 2016

The third nominee, Kim Murphy of SAlt, makes their speech to a largely distracted room. They then withdraw their nomination - this seems to be a trend for Socialist Alternative.

Fitton-Williams are elected to shouts of “shame” from all sides of the room.
 


There Were More Flips Than Even Simone Biles Could Manage - 8:10pm

The nominations for General Executive in alphabetical order are Adam Boidin, Amelia Chan, Sophia Chung, Liam Donohue, Caitie McMenamin, Chloe Rafferty and Patrick Ryan. Boidin, of Stand Up, gives a short thank you, while Amelia waives her right to speak. Sophia said she would make campus life “safer and more inclusive of all students”. Liam Donohue waives his right to speak. Caitie said she would be a “strong advocate on council and executive”. Chloe, from SAlt, used her platform to denigrate Australian federal politics and capitalism, as well as claiming that the SRC needs to deliver more than “just free donuts”, referencing Labor’s ‘Free Krispy Kreme’ handout today. She then withdraws her nomination. Patrick Ryan pointed out to all the people in the room wearing his pretty fabulous “Twins for tickets” hats, claiming he is the leader of a “universal movement” and that “twins pay twice as much for textbooks… think of the twins”.

During voting, powerful swing voter Alex Fitton moved back over to the Power side of the room, seemingly to vote with the SLS-Grassroots block once again for General Executive. Eternal hack Cameron Caccamo asks to help scrutineer the votes, and everyone laughs because - it’s kinda funny. He is then nominated by Pat Ryan of ‘Twins for Tickets’. Everyone laughs again. It’s still funny.

Boidin, Chan, Chung, Donohue and Ryan are elected to General Executive.

 

A Liberal Decides They Want to Advocate for Education Rights Against University Management. No One Laughs. - 8:25pm

Education Officer nominations begin swiftly, and nominations are announced: April Holcombe and Isabella Devine-Poulos (SAlt and Grassroots), Jenna Schrodes and Ed McCann (NLS and Libs), Eleanor Morley (SAlt), and Kelton Muir (Solidarity). Holcombe-Poulos are first to speak, reprimanding university management’s education cuts and fee deregulation. “I won’t get burned out, I won’t get triggered, I won’t use my identity for my own gain” said Holcombe. They both leave the stage with massive applause.

Schrodes takes the floor on behalf of herself and McCann, saying, “I know my running mate will piss a lot of people off … I do not hold the same beliefs as he does”. The audience has a lot to say about that, but frankly it’s unintelligible. Eleanor Morley takes the stage to speak, and she is also met with applause. She decries the “political opportunism” occurring tonight with a Liberal nominee for Education Officer. There is a lot of screaming from both Morley and the audience. Kelton then steps in and congratulates the current Education Officers, and says that he will continue their work.

2017 will see one of the busiest years for the education officers, with the planned University restructure going ahead. Schrodes-McCann are elected 17 to Holcombe-Poulos’ 15.

Collective Autonomy was Surprisingly Not Breached - 8:40pm

Nominations for Women’s Officer are Imogen Grant and Katie Thorburn, who were preselected by the Women’s Collective, Kim Murphy (SAlt) and Andrea Zephyr (Unity). Thorburn and Grant take the floor and cut through the cacophony with “shut the fuck up, women are speaking”. In the middle of their speech, Zephyr cuts in and calls Grant “transphobic” while she condemns Alex Fitton for their last-minute declaration that they are not a cis-identifying male. As their speech continues, Katie begins to become increasingly emotional: “We have to make sure the conversation around sexual assault in unavoidable”. Kim Murphy stands up to speak about Federal politics regarding women’s rights, and proceeds to take the rest of her allotted time to run over to Jenna Schrodes to yell at her for the previous altercation between SAlt and the NLS-Lib nomination for Education Officer.

Zephyr takes the floor amid huge applause. She yells to the cheering crowd “I will not be lectured on transmisogyny by the women’s collective”. Amidst yells from Zephyr, Devine-Poulos and Alisha Aitken-Radburn begin screaming at each other from the back of the room. Holcombe starts screaming as well. There is so much screaming. I pop a Strepsil.

As Grant and Thorburn are announced as Women’s Officers, Thorburn begins to cry.
 


The Calm After the Storm - 9:15pm 

After the heated election of the Women’s Officers, there was a much needed break, and I ate a handful (or two) of some much needed M&M’s. Talk on the town during the reprieve is that Labour Left faction NLS flipped their votes from the Stand Up block in order to ensure collective autonomy was not breached for the Women’s Collective. At 8.50pm, the break is over and a quorum count is passed. Let’s forge ahead. Before nominations continue, all thirty-three ballots for Chair of Standing Legal are recalled by Pauline. Anxious paper-shuffling ensues. People whisper about whether or not the guy in the hat next to Pauline is her husband. Maybe we’re not missing The Bachelor after all.

Eden is leaving her post and Spice Queen Swetha is taking over. Apparently I missed the best bits so let’s mourn together.

Libs, Libs, Libs - 10:05pm

Nominations for Welfare Officer are Bella Devine-Poulos and Lily Campbell, Claudia G-D, Jack Whitney, and Caitlin McMenamin and Declan Maher. The Liberals were mentioned a lot - I miss campaigning days. The speeches began with Campbell claiming current NUS Welfare Officer Robby Magyar had “done nothing” in this position. Devine-Poulos turned up the heat further by opening with “every member of the labor party doesn’t give a shit about student welfare”. Whitney doesn’t respond to the shots fired at the Labor factions in his speech and told voters, “if you want to vote for a progressive person please vote for me”. The next speech of SLS-SAlt duo has McMenamin asking “how many more students are we going to allow to slip through the cracks?”. Maher rounds off the speeches by calling Liberals “scum”.

As someone has withdrawn their nomination before Paulene announced the result, the first council meeting will determine who will be Welfare Officer in 2017. The Returning Officer noted that the people elected if the nominations were all counted would have been Diaz and Devine-Poulos and Campbell.

Paulene has announced that somebody has walked away with someone else’s ballot paper. Now all SRC Councillors have to hand in their ballot personally as opposed to the previous method of a member of each faction handing in ballot papers.

Here’s Another Thing That Has Happened - 10:14pm

Out of the two nominations for the Chair of the Standing Legal Committee, Alisha Aitken Radburn has won over Liam Thorne.

The two nominations for Standing Legal Committee are Andrea Zephyr and Isabella Pytka, and both were elected.

Ethnocultural Officer Bearer and Indigenous Officer: Contested then Uncontested - 11PM

Sophia Chung, and Madeline Ward and Radha Wahyuwidayat were voted in as Autonmous Collective Against Racism Office Bearers by the collective last week. In their speeches they asked that the collective’s autonomy is respected. Chung said that she wanted to fight for people of colour “on and off campus”. The Ward-Wahyuwidayat duo spoke about the importance of decolonising the curriculum and providing a platform for Indigenous voices. The issues of Islamophobia and the vandalism of the Muslim prayer room on campus were brought up as issues that needed to be addressed by the collective. SAlt nominees respectively spoke about Islamophobia and Indigenous issues, but both rescinded their nominations after their speeches. Chung, Ward and Wahyuwidayat were announced as the ACAR OBs for 2017.

Jackson Newell has been announced as the Indigenous Officer for 2017. As the sole nominee, the second position will be determined by the new council.

International student officers named as Yifan Kong-Helen Ng and Wenxin Fang-Zhixian Wang.

Motion Carried for No More Speeches - 11:10pm

I've run out of lollies.

10 Ballots Missing; Huge if True - 11:20pm

Wasn’t true. Paulene found the ballots on her desk.

Enviro Collective Officer positions were voted in by the collective for Andy Mason and Mashumi Power, and Jodie Paul and Seth Dias. Elected instead were a pair from the collective election and two members of Unity: Dominic McDonald and Jake Williams.

Spice is BACK - 11:32pm

USyd has an interesting history drawing out name to elect positions. Angelica Fernandez was elected in one position for Global Solidarity Officer, and so the second position was up for grabs. Due to an invalid vote, the votes were split 16-16. The names were drawn out of a bag. The duo of Fahad Ali-Roy Elder were drawn. Ali then proceeded to yell “Free Palestine and fuck you cunts”.

Things Become Quicker and Easier - 11:40pm

Intercampus officers: Jacob Masina, and Amelia Chan and Thandi Bethune.

Sexual harassment officers: Jessica Sayed and Nina Dillon Britton, and Andrea Zephyr and Lorena White Medina.

Queer officers: Connor Parissis and Andrea Zephyr and William Edwards

Disability officers: Mollie Galvin, and Hannah Makris and Noa Zulman

Mature Age Student Officers: Andrea Zephyr and Cameron Hawkins

Social Justice Officers: Edward Bruce and Adam Torres, and Kim Murphy and Michelle Picone

Student Housing Officers: Nicola Haggerty-Myers and Claudia Gulbransen-Diaz

Refugee Rights Officers: Kelton Muir, Caitie McMenamin and Jess Whittal

Well folks, something that should have happened hours ago finally came upon us: we, along with all the student politicians, empty Thai La Ong takeaway boxes and ghosts of Repselect past are being shepherded out of the Professorial Boardroom. Six hours of negotiating, bickering and heckling, and there is still about forty minutes left of material to get through. Pray for us. Pray for me. Pray for the future of Australian politics.

Goodnight.


- With help from Jemima Wilson and Brendan James O'Shea

Pulp Editors