Student Government special election suspended indefinitely

The Student Court ruled the election violates SG statutes.

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Student Government special election suspended indefinitely

Photo courtesy of Student Government

Photo courtesy of Student Government

Photo courtesy of Student Government

Photo courtesy of Student Government

Nate Nkumbu, Staff Writer

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A fter an hour of discussion, the Student Court voted 3-0 Wednesday against a special election announced by Vice President for Student Affairs Corey King.

Chief Justice Isaiah Moriarity said the decision indefinitely suspends the SG president and vice president election, which the court believes is unconstitutional. If evidence can be brought proving the election is legal under SG statutes, the court may reconsider.

King announced a special election would be held following the disqualification of President-elect Jacqueline LaBayne and Vice President Kyle MacDonald. They were ruled ineligible to serve after campaigning 10 days too early, violating a major SG statute.

According to Moriarity, a special election can only take place if the Student Court “invalidates” the original election for violating SG statutes. The chief justice said this wasn’t the case as the Feb. 27-28 election was constitutional.

He added that a special election has to be called by election chairperson Doug Speed, not VP for Student Affairs King.

“In the event of the invalidation of an election, the election chair must call a special election within three weeks or by the end of the semester, whichever comes first,” he said. “However … the Student Court did not invalidate the election.”

At the beginning of the meeting, current student body President Emily Lawless asked the court to allow the special election.

“If the Student Court has the ability to modify an election so drastically, then why even have an election in the first place,” Lawless said. “If I can’t trust Student Government, then how can students trust Student Government.”

Lawless then added, “I may seem like a joke to some of you, but the position of student body president is an important one … Please let the students pick who they want for president. I beg for a new election.”

The court’s ruling now heads to election chairperson Speed, who will “verify” the results.

If Speed approves of the court’s decision, the election’s runner up — SG Speaker of the House Marianne Alex and her running mate Edward Perez — will be named president and vice president respectively. Then, the decision will go to VP for Student Affairs King, who can choose to accept or reject the ruling.

Nate Nkumbu is a staff writer for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @FoureyedNate.