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Saturday, May 25, 2024

Party's platform is more of the same

By Editorial Board

We're not gonna sugarcoat this: We've seen the Progress Party's platform before.

Increasing Student Government transparency, fixing WebMail and Regional Transit System bus routes, and handing out condoms all over campus have been highlighted in every party platform ever.

OK, we might be exaggerating just a tad, but the point is, nothing really new ever comes from party platforms.

Or does it?

We must admit we're intrigued by Progress' desire to move from the God-awful WebMail service to the tried-and-true Gmail interface. Several universities, including Northwestern and Arizona State universities, already use the technology. Progress claims replacing WebMail could actually save UF money. If this is true, nothing should hold UF back from making the switch, regardless of what any political party says.

But we can't help but be cynical about reforming SG and making it more transparent. Capping election spending is easier said than done. We're sure candidates spend plenty of money promoting themselves unofficially - buying pitchers of beer at The Swamp Restaurant and lunch for hungry campaigners can't be cheap. And reducing the number of cabinet positions never seems to work. Those cabinets are like gray hairs. For every one SG gets rid of, two more come back in its place. And we still have no clue what the point of the Orange and Blue Cabinet is, but somehow that one merits two - yes, two - directors.

Progress also wants to possibly reroute RTS buses or add buses to routes. The issue here isn't having more buses. It's about having more buses when students need them most. Students should not have to wait 45 minutes for a bus and still be late for class. We need more buses at peak times, not at all times. If Progress can prove it can correct the bus problem - and at a reasonable cost - they'll have our attention. Here's a hint: Start collecting data now, so you can have answers before the election. Don't expect to get voted in on the possibility of finding a solution.

And claiming it will end SG's "adversarial relationship" with the Alligator is a nice concept, but sorry, guys. We won't be getting buddy-buddy anytime soon. Of course, we will gladly praise SG for a job well done when and if the time comes. Why, if we were friends, how could we report on SG abuses of money and power?

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