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Hamilton College Alumni Election:

According to the Chronicle of Higher Education, Hamilton alumni have received a letter from the college's chairman of the board endorsing the official candidates, while enforcing limits on communications by the petition candidates (story available here):

Trustee candidates, who seek to join Hamilton's board, were allotted 100 words for a written statement that accompanies the ballot. They may also send mail to Hamilton's 17,000 alumni at their expense, but they may not send mass e-mail messages or mention Web sites in the written statements.

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Ms. Neal said the officially nominated candidates had received a boost from a recent letter to alumni, signed by the chairman of Hamilton's board, that encouraged alumni to vote for the three candidates named by the Alumni Council. Ms. Barrie acknowledged that such a letter had been mailed.

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Ms. Barrie denied that the rules had been created to influence the election. For example, she said, e-mail messages are banned to prevent spamming and because Hamilton has e-mail addresses for only 60 percent of its alumni. Surface mail is a more thorough way to contact alumni, she said, because the college has a higher percentage of their street addresses.

Of course, Barrie's explanation applies only to email, not to web sites, which do not spam anyone. It alsohas been reported that the referenced endorsement letter was even sent on Hamilton College letterhead. The Alumni Council Executive Committee also sent out an endorsement letter on college letterhead.

An informative article on the campaign restrictions from the Syracuse Post-Staandard is available here.

FIRE comments favorably on the free speech position of one of the petition candidates here.

The Hamilton College Alumni for Governance Reform website that contains links to many of the documents is here.

Hamilton alumni who wish to vote must be sure that their completed ballots are received by next Monday August 15.

Mike Lorrey (mail) (www):
This story seems so incredibly like the most recent trustee election at Dartmouth College, in which the insurgent candidates won. You'd think if they were playing from the same playbook, they'd take the time to watch the after-game videos....
8.8.2005 8:06pm
Jeremy (mail):
The "Hamilton College Alumni for Governance Reform" website is horrible. I wanted to offer them some assistance related to this issue, but I couldn't find an e-mail address or any sort of contact info.
8.8.2005 9:43pm
hb (mail) (www):
1) Candidates were prohibited from providing any contact data or making reference to any specific hard copy or online resourses in their statements of candidacy
2) There was also a letter sent out to Kirkland College alumna on Kirkland College letterhead. Kirkland College, of course, has not existed for some 8 years. We're getting a copy of the letter and will post it up.
3) Yes, our web site is, well, primative at best. We welcome suggestions. You can email me on the email link (left most column) at www.hcagr.modblog.com
4) rumor has it that the administration is getting daily updates on the vote. Some report personal calls from trustees and organized phone banks from the Alumni Council.

It seems the petition candidates may be getting some votes...

hb for hcagr
8.10.2005 11:54am
hb (mail) (www):
1) Candidates were prohibited from providing any contact data or making reference to any specific hard copy or online resourses in their statements of candidacy
2) There was also a letter sent out to Kirkland College alumna on Kirkland College letterhead. Kirkland College, of course, has not existed for some 8 years. We're getting a copy of the letter and will post it up.
3) Yes, our web site is, well, primative at best. We welcome suggestions. You can email me on the email link (left column)at www.hcagr.modblog.com
4) Rumor has it that the administration is getting daily updates on the vote. Some report personal calls from trustees and organized phone banks from the Alumni Council.

It seems the petition candidates may be getting some votes...

hb for hcagr
8.10.2005 11:56am
hb (mail) (www):
There will be another election for alumni trustees this year at Hamilton.

HCAGR has moved to a new web site

www.hcagr.squarespace.com
hb
1.10.2006 2:14pm
hb (mail) (www):
There will be another election for alumni trustees this year at Hamilton.

HCAGR has moved to a new web site

www.hcagr.squarespace.com
hb
1.10.2006 2:15pm