Wayne State Watergate

WSC elections cause controversy ending in a re-vote


Morgan Stough

Nathan Schreiter and Nolan Janzen won the Student Senate presidential election only to receive a challenge from their opponents that some of the bylaws had been violated.

Hanna Conrad, Staff Writer

The Student Senate has made a decision to conduct a re-vote concerning the complaint filed against the new President Nolan Janzen and Vice President Nathan Schreiter.

Before the Student Senate meeting on Sunday, a hearing was held that allowed the opposing party to defend their complaint and the other to give a rebuttal.

The complaint was filed by Senators Nathan Boggess and Marcy Mercier regarding a violation in Section “M” of the Election Rules and Regulation handbook.

Section “M” states that all media, excluding buttons, shall be removed within a 50-foot radius of all polling places and the Student Center 30 minutes before the voting begins.

“The complaint was not a personal attack,” Mercier said. “The re-vote is the fairest way to go about things and it will benefit campus most.”

According to the complaint letter, Janzen and Schreiter’s posters were still hung up in the lower cafeteria, the entrance in the plaza near Bowen Hall and the entrance of the library while the polls were open. The posters may have been the last thing students saw before they went to vote, possibly sending a subliminal message to at least six students.

The margin of the victory was 11 votes.

“I informed Nolan and Nathan of the rule,” Boggess said on the complaint letter. “They stated that they would take them down, but the posters were never removed during the week and were still hanging on Friday morning.”

“It shows disregard for the rules they are supposed to uphold and enforce,” he said.

Janzen said that he and Schreiter took down all of their posters before the election.

“Any flyers that were still up were put there by someone else,” Janzen said.

Janzen and Schreiter’s written rebuttal stated that in Article VI Bylaw 1 Section “N” of the handbook, any violation of election procedures must be determined at a hearing with the Student Government Committee of the Student Senate within three days.

“The last alleged violation was on Thursday, March 20, but we did not receive formal notification of the complaint until a week later on March 27,” Janzen said. “The hearing was not held until March 30, 10 full days after the fact.”

Janzen said the rule is designed to settle any election disputes within three days of a violation, not just a complaint.

“The hearing should have happened on Sunday, March 23, having it later than that is both illegal and a violation of our rights as candidates,” Janzen said.

Janzen said that the Student Senate ignored its own ratified laws and chose to proceed with the hearing on Sunday.

“Student Senate is responsible to uphold their own laws and have no power to ignore them,” Janzen said. “It is unethical and brings the integrity of the entire Student Senate into question.”

“We have formally submitted a complaint to Student Senate President Alyssa Bish and Dr. Carstens explaining that the hearing was illegal and any decisions resulting from are void,” he said.

As of now, the voting polls will be re-opened on April 9 and 10.