Fernandez, McGovern win razor-thin run-off

Jessie Markovetz

High turnout in run-off ends in Fernandez and McGovern’s favor

Updated Tuesday, April 15 1:48 p.m.By one of the narrowest margins in Student Government Association election history, Nestor Fernandez and Timothy McGovern won the presidential run-off over Maureen Holland and Gita Gupte Tuesday, 1,212 to 1,190.Fernandez and McGovern, both juniors, won the run-off despite garnering fewer votes in the first election, which was won by Holland and Gupte by a 986-895 count.The candidates were forced to endure a second week on the campaign trail, as neither captured the required majority vote of the almost 2,800 ballots cast online in the first election.Upon hearing the results of the election, Fernandez produced a tiny bottle of rum, which he immediately quaffed and threw to the ground.”We’re amazed. This was so close,” he said shortly afterwards.”We have a lot of love for this school, and people obviously recognized that.”Running mate McGovern was quick to credit the opposition.”Maureen was a great opponent,” he said.”It was an honor to run against them.”Fernandez and McGovern’s platform consisted of reorganizing the budget system to give students more control of funds, creating an online guide on finding off-campus housing locations, re-paving the Quad and increasing support for the basketball team.Holland, who was seeking re-election for her senior year, lost the run-off despite her ticket’s combined six years of experience to Fernandez’s zero.In total, 2,402 students made it to the online polls Monday and Tuesday, the highest turnout in run-off history. Total turnout was down slightly from last week’s record-setting participation, as 2,765 students voted in the first election, breaking the previous high of 2,534 votes set in 2001 between two presidential tickets. The first round of this year’s election featured five presidential candidates, the most since the same number ran in 1998. In that year, less than 2,000 voters made it to the polls.”I’m pretty pleased by the high turnout in the runoff,” elections commissioner Patrick Sheldrake said.”I think it credits the propensity and talent of both of the candidates.”Several hundred people gathered at the Oreo to hear the announcement.