Senate pwns game bill

Feb 162011
Authors: Andrew Carrera

Student government Senate shot down a resolution Wednesday night that would have allowed the office to hook up a Nintendo 64 to a “woefully underused” flat-screen television as a way to bring more students into the office.

The Associated Students of CSU senators voted down the legislation in a 2-16-5 vote, reflecting widespread dissatisfaction with aspects of the resolution’s potentially negative side effects.

Chase Eckerdt, community affairs director for ASCSU, took issue with the idea that he would be getting paid to what would amount to “Super Smash Bros.” video game sessions with fellow students.

“We have a budget that’s paid for entirely by student fees,” he said, also lamenting the lack of professionalism he believes the office would display if the legislation passed. “Outreach is huge … but a couple weeks ago I had a candidate for mayor come into the office. I just don’t want him seeing a bunch of people playing video games.”

Written by Sens. Ben Weiner and Jack Harries, the “Associated Students of CSU Student Involvement Act” encourages individuals to join student government in the Senate chambers to “enjoy some video games and discuss their ideas and opinions for the future of CSU.”

The idea mirrors previous senators’ attempts at increasing what ASCSU officials call low student involvement in student government. According to ASCSU Controller Tim Sellers, in years past, a liberal arts college senator set up a booth in the plaza that said, “Come play video games with your senator.”

Sens. Weiner and Harries originally wanted to utilize an ASCSU-purchased $1,588 flat screen television and a donated Nintendo 64 game console as ways to achieve their resolution.

Sen. Harries said too much rigid professionalism would discourage students from participating in ASCSU and said students might be turned off by an overly serious office culture.

“It does get students in there, which is something that doesn’t happen very often,” Harries said in the moments leading up to the bill’s failure. “It would just be a good place to have talks with them … and tell them about mainly what we do as senators and what all the departments are doing.”

ASCSU Deputy Chief of Staff Eric Berlinberg, however, did not believe video games would spark dialogue between students and their student government.

“I don’t understand the connection between providing a video game forum to effectively spreading the message of what their representatives are doing,” he said. “For the most part, we need to go to them. That’s why we get paid.”

Senior Reporter Andrew Carrera can be reached at

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