HUMR_Hacker_JEdmund-Edited
Photo by Jarrett Edmund

SU general election hacked by Russia

By Scott Strasser, March 7 2017 —

University of Calgary Students’ Union officials are investigating allegations that the 2017 general election was hacked by the Student’s Association of Mount Russia University (SAMRU).

After hours of investigation, members of the SU’s IT department confirmed that espionage units from SAMRU posed as U of C students in order to manipulate the vote count of the 2017 SU election.

The SU theorizes that Russian spies donned U of C sweaters and a smug air of superiority in order to blend in as U of C students. According to SU Chief Returning Officer Mark Anderson, as many as eight MRU students might have casted ballots in the 2017 election — more than enough to swing the balance of total votes towards a candidate, given the atrocious voter turnout of SU elections.

“This was a highly sophisticated operation,” Anderson said.

SAMRU president Vadim Pavlyuchenko denied the hacking allegations, claiming that such claims are purely speculation.

“Our institution has no interest in meddling in your silly elections,” he said. “We are a great institution with a proud history.”

Fourth-year U of C business student write-in Donnie Turner won the 2017 SU presidential race with 49 per cent of the vote.

The incoming SU president said he is skeptical that MRU hacked the election, but said he would “have probably won regardless.” He said he highly respects Pavlyuchenko and hopes to form a positive relationship with SAMRU officials during his term.

“These MRU guys, they’re among the smartest in the city. It makes sense to form an alliance with them,” Turner said.

Turner infamously ran on a campaign promise of building a “MacWall” around the U of C campus. He claims the endeavor is necessary to prevent students from other universities coming to study in U of C spaces, such as the Taylor Family Digital Library.

“We need the wall,” Turner said at his first press conference. “These students are coming onto our campus and taking our study spaces. They’re cheaters, they’re plagiarists, they’re some bad dudes. The study spaces that we work so hard for — we need to keep ‘em out.”

Mary Thomas, a second-year civil engineering student at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology who frequently studies at the TFDL, said she fears what the future holds at the U of C under Turner’s leadership.

“The rhetoric that Turner spouted throughout his campaign was so protectionist,” Thomas said.

Thomas claims that even if the MacWall is built, it probably won’t stop non-U of C students from studying at the TFDL or other places at the U of C for that matter.

“We at SAIT will probably find a way to get around the wall,” she said.

In response, Turner called Thomas a “nasty woman” and said he would have her deported from the U of C if she were ever found studying on campus, despite the SU having no control over something like that.

This article is part of our humour section.

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