SG Elections Continue

When the Boca House of Representatives started electing their leadership for the year two weeks ago, she ran for the top office: speaker of the house.

It came down to the very last vote, but she lost.

Last week, Pollack ran for the office directly under speaker, pro-tempore. She lost that one by three votes.

Afterward, she was offered the chair position on one of the three main legislative committees, Ways and Means, which handles legislation related to money. She accepted.

But after two representatives turned down the chair position for Rules and Policies – the least popular committee, which evaluates SG’s internal rules and handles appeals – she offered to take that one instead.
“Nobody wants that position,” says James Tobin, the newly re-elected speaker of the house. “And she chaired it last year.”

SG Adviser Rivka Felsher praised Pollack’s continued commitment in the face of two close losses.
“That’s a huge leadership quality,” says Felsher.

Pollack says it’s passion more than anything else.
“Taking one for the team?” Pollack says with a small, self-conscious shrug. “I love Student Government.”

The 19-year-old joined the House of Representatives as a freshman on Jan. 18, 2007. That’s also the day her opponent for the pro-tempore seat, Marni Sherman, became a House rep.

Coincidentally, the two have known each other since well before their SG days.
“We’ve been best friends since like 10th or 11th grade,” says Pollack.

While they may be close outside of SG, inside things look a little different.

Pollack was re-elected to the House with 230 votes, more than any other candidate in the fall legislative election last month. Sherman got 141.

On top of that, she says that some of the people who voted for her in the speaker election voted against her in the pro-tempore election. They voted instead for her best friend Sherman – who had the position last term, too.

But Pollack doesn’t let competition in SG interfere with her friendship. She says after the election, everything was normal between them.
“It kind of sucks at times, but it has to stay separate from your personal life,” says Pollack.

Although she was surprised by the vote-switchers in the pro-temp election – there were four, enough to cost her the win – she was a little shocked by the number of votes she got in the closer speaker election.
“James is better speaker material,” says Pollack. “I was just so nervous. It’s nerve-racking being up there, you feel everyone’s kind of against you. I was stumbling over my words and going a mile a minute.”

After the speaker election, winner Tobin went upstairs to his office to prepare for the next meeting. He says Chief Justice Mike Burdman played Queen’s “We Are the Champions,” while UP reporters down the hall also heard Kool & the Gang’s “Celebration.”

Pollack, meanwhile, says she stayed downstairs and spoke to newer members of the House who were unsure about SG.
“I didn’t have a chip on my shoulder,” she says, hinting that she may run again. “I’m not discouraged.”

But, jokingly, she made clear she wasn’t going for a world record in political losses, either.
“It’s not a Ralph Nader thing,” says Pollack, referring to an independent politician who has run a marginal campaign for the U.S. presidency five times, starting in 1992.

Pollack doesn’t even want to be a politician – she’s a biology major who wants to be a pediatric orthopedist, a doctor who specializes in children’s surgery. But she loves SG.
“I think it’s for the students, and I hope everyone in SG is that passionate,” says Pollack.