Chaffee does not win election; SGA elections will be held again

In a leg­isla­tive turn of events, our last head­line “Chaffe new pres­i­dent; Shaf­fer vice” is incor­rect. It was decided by the IE (internal/external affairs) com­mit­tee that nei­ther Cody Chaf­fee nor Kara Schmidt were able to win the race due to Stu­dent Gov­ern­ment Asso­ci­a­tion (SGA) leg­isla­tive rules unfol­lowed and griev­ances filed against each other. They will hold elec­tions for SGA pres­i­dent again some­time in the yet-to-be-decided future.

On Mon­day April 15, roughly 30 peo­ple filled YU room 201. Schmidt and her run­ning part­ner and cur­rent pres­i­dent, Gra­ham Garfield, made a griev­ance against Chaffee’s cam­paign. Wis­con­sin state law for pub­lic uni­ver­si­ties SGA is that on Elec­tion Day you can­not be cam­paign­ing in the build­ing the polls are in, or within 50 feet out­side of it. Around lunch time Chaffee’s sis­ter, Ceasyn, gave out candy in the YU and encour­aged stu­dents to vote for her brother.

Chaf­fee filed mul­ti­ple griev­ances against Schmidt’s cam­paign; though only choose at the IE meet­ing to address two of them. The first he wanted to address was that Garfield had used his pres­i­den­tial power to email all stu­dents to vote for him and Schmidt with­out men­tion­ing Chaf­fee was run­ning. This griev­ance was dis­missed by the com­mit­tee: 4–0-1, because Garfield had not used his pres­i­den­tial abil­ity to email all stu­dents this email. He only emailed stu­dents in the majors and orga­ni­za­tions that he was allowed as a stu­dent. The email did not have his pres­i­den­tial sig­na­ture, and the email was fairly con­sid­ered a cam­paign email that Chaf­fee would have had the full abil­ity to have done as well.

The sec­ond griev­ance filed against the Schmidt cam­paign was on the sim­i­lar sub­ject of the one filled against him. Friend of Schmidt, Chelsey Bere­iter, was wear­ing a “vote for Kara” shirt in the YU at 8:00 a.m. of the cam­paign, but was promptly told by SGA Sen­a­tor Mar­shall Hans­berry that this was against the rules, and she changed shirts imme­di­ately. Bere­iter was unaware of the cam­paign rules and had had no other part, before or after this, in the cam­paign process. Schmidt later thanked every­one in a face­book sta­tus for all their work in the cam­paign and men­tioned Bere­iter in the post.

Hans­berry said only two or three peo­ple may have seen Bereiter’s shirt in the YU that morn­ing, but Chaf­fee said that shirt may have influ­enced upwards of 100 votes. SGA sen­a­tor Mack Peters spoke say­ing that Ceasyn and Bere­iter were try­ing to help their friends out of the kind­ness of their hearts. “They were both warned once that what they were doing was against the rules, and after that they both stopped,” said Peters.

The IE Com­mit­tee chose to have a pri­vate vote and dis­cus­sion on these griev­ances. Every­one except those on the com­mit­tee waited out­side of the room for two and a half hours. The Sen­ate meet­ing, which was sup­posed to meet after the IE meet­ing, was post­poned to Wednes­day, since this IE com­mis­sion meet­ing ended up being 4 hours long.

Two cam­pus secu­rity offi­cers were called in by an unknown source to keep an eye on the active crowd out­side and for when the results of the griev­ances were announced.

I brought for­ward the griev­ance because we feel that fol­low­ing the state law is the most impor­tant thing,” said Schmitt in an inter­view. “We are state elected offi­cials, if we are going to take it seri­ously, we’re going to in every way,”

It is unfor­tu­nate that a com­pro­mise couldn’t be met and as a result of griev­ances now the SGA will be start­ing the year with­out its offi­cial cab­i­net,” said Chaffee.


Kirsten Scheid — The Stinger
Kirsten Scheid — The Stinger
Kirsten Scheid — The Stinger





Print Friendly