TSG’s Justices reinstated the endorsement requirement for tickets, but with a new clause.
Representatives of Temple Student Government’s Supreme Court convened yesterday in the Student Center to hear an issue pertaining to the 2010 elections code.
Two weeks ago, the Court decided to strike a previous requirement for candidates running for TSG executive offices to have an endorsement from at least one student organization. Chief Justice Keith Davis said the rationale for having stricken this requirement was that it created a bias toward students who were originally members of large student organizations, and biasing toward large student organizations in general.
Elections Commissioner LaCole Foots testified on behalf of the Elections Committee, arguing that the endorsement requirement should be reinstated.
“The endorsement is the easiest way to pull in different types of students. Student [organizations] represent a plethora of interests, and at least they’re passionate enough to pursue those interests. So these are the kind of students [whose voices we want heard], because they can tell you what’s going on ‘on the streets’ at Temple,” Foots, a senior political science and communications major said.
“I think it’s very ethical because when you’re running for office, you’re going to have the [organizations] you look out for, whose interests you represent, at least have one additional [organization] that you care about, that you learn about, that you get to know. I think it’s that simple, just learning about Temple students,” Foots said.
Foots presented this testimony to Davis and the associate justices, sophomore accounting major Regina Guignard, junior political science major Nelson Diaz and junior political science major Adrian Stepanian.
After hearing the testimony and dedicating time to questions about potential revisions or clauses, the Court convened privately to make its decision.
“We are going to reinstate it with the provision that the endorsement come from one small organization, defined as less than 35 members in size, and that’s active membership,” Davis said in the ruling. “To ensure that this is in fact the case, we would like with the endorsement come a letter from their board, their president or whoever is in charge of monitoring their attendance rates, stating that they have less than 35 members.”
The associate justices explained the ruling to Foots.
“They can solicit larger organizations, but they are required to have one smaller one,” Guignard said.
“We feel that the one that if [the one that is required] is a small organization, it will get to that end more than if that candidate [is] going to some large established organization, and in doing that, it [provides] incentive to go to more organizations, so I think that will help in tying in organizations,” Stepanian said.
Foots agreed that the elections committee could support that ruling, and was on board.
“We met today to discuss a section of the election codes for 2010 that was stricken … by the court two weeks ago,” Davis said. “Having heard testimony to that end, we have decided to reinstate it with a new proviso.”
Valerie Rubinsky can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.