Student Association Senator Jason Kaplan declared his intent to run for SA president Tuesday night.
Kaplan’s declaration comes after thorough discussions with family, friends and other members of the GW student body, a press release, sent to The Hatchet and other media outlets and SA insiders, said.
“Many of my peers have told me that the SA needs to focus on student needs,” Kaplan said.
Kaplan, who finished fourth during the race for the Columbian College senate seats last year, is the first candidate to publicly throw his hat in the ring for the top student spot.
The dates for the SA election have not yet been made public but will likely be in March. The campaign season is not likely to begin for another month, but the chair of the Joint Elections Committee, Galen Petruso, declined to say if Kaplan’s announcement was a violation to election rules.
“I cannot say whether or not his announcement is a violation. Complaints are not allowed to be filed until the campaign begins and so it is far too early for us to start considering possible violations,” Petruso said. “We don’t yet have an investigator appointed, and so until a complaint is filed, I can’t consider anything related to a violation.”
The first-year senator and vice chair to the Senate Rules Committee is looking to reach out to students, running on the perennial platform of ending “GW politics” and red tape for students.
“The current administration has not done enough to directly address the desires of the student body. The students aren’t looking for the next President of the United States, they’re tired of hearing about the so called ‘GW politics’, they want a real student with practical solutions,” Kaplan said.
Kaplan calls himself a “sincere reformer” of the many broken institutions within the GW community. He made headlines earlier this year when he confronted SA president Jason Lifton over an e-mail Lifton sent to the GW Patriot – a student run blog – about the Patriot’s behavior at a Senate meeting.
“GW students are engrossed in school work and extracurricular activities and don’t have time to worry about SA politics. Our university [sic] needs an advocate who will cut through the red tape and wasted time in order to get to business,” said Kaplan.
Kaplan is a brother in Zeta Beta Tau and former president of GW Acting Politically for Israel. He also wrote four articles for The Hatchet his freshman year.