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Minnesota State University, Mankato
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Frederick withdraws from race

Carpenter and Rajabali remain candidates for MSSA president

by Derek Wehrwein

Issue date: 03/24/09 Section: Campus News
Chris Frederick is out and Brett Carpenter is in.

With only one day left for students to file for the presidential and vice presidential positions, the Minnesota State Student Association race appears to be solidifying.

Frederick, the former MSSA president and current Minnesota State University Student Association president, caught many off guard when he filed for president last week. He withdrew from the race Monday morning, however.

Carpenter had also filed last week but was unsure whether he would be able to follow through due to other factors involving employment and education. The MSSA speaker has since committed to a run, however, and is forming a party called "Lead MSU" with running mate Josh Gladis, a junior Crawford senator.

Barring any last-minute filings from other candidates, Carpenter and Gladis will face the team of MSSA Vice President Murtaza Rajabali and Sen. Bob Dooley, who have formed the party "Mavericks Stand Tall."

Frederick could not be reached for comment Monday, but Rajabali said he wasn't surprised to see Frederick withdraw.

"I saw it coming," he said. "We thought he was joking all along, and we were just waiting for it to end."

Now, with the campaigns well underway, both tickets' members have their eyes on the April 1 presidential and vice presidential debates. Elections take place on April 7.

Rajabali indicated he doesn't know yet where Carpenter stands on a variety of important issues. Carpenter, meanwhile, said he and Gladis provide "a more realistic vision for student fees and the idea that if tuition is increasing, we can't allow student fees to run away with it."

Both Rajabali and Dooley emphasized their party's organization and experience. Dooley, who also touted the party's diversity and broad support among MSSA senators, said the most important issue facing MSU students is the budget crisis.

"It's a lose-lose situation for students if we don't do something drastic quick," he said.

Rajabali noted he and Dooley don't necessarily agree on everything, saying, "We don't exactly have the same perspective on all issues - and that's a good thing."

Gladis, meanwhile, said he was looking forward to the opportunity to run as Carpenter's vice president.

"When Brett came to me and started talking about it, I was pretty excited [about the chance]," he said. Dooley echoed that sentiment, saying he was excited about the upcoming debate and chance to run against an opponent.

"It would have been very disappointing to have run unopposed," he said.

While the deadline to file for president or vice president is today, students are still able to file for senator until March 31.

Derek Wehrwein is the Reporter editor in chief