Tuesday, March 19, 2002 Volume 67, Issue 111


SGA candidate files complaint alleging violations of code

Complaint: Cougar 1Card will be necessary to vote

By Tim Williams
Senior Staff Writer

Independent SGA presidential candidate Fabian Sifuentes filed a complaint with the Election Commission on Monday, charging that several alleged election code violations committed by the commission and Student Government Association created an advantage for the incumbent Student Voice Party.

No one in the SGA office knew last Friday where and at what time the candidate seminar would be held Monday, Sifuentes, a communication junior, said.

The election code stipulates that "at the time of filing, each candidate will be informed in writing of the time and location of the seminar."

"By not informing candidates of the mandatory candidate seminar in writing as required, opponents to the incumbent party could be disqualified from their
prospective races because of their absence," Sifuentes said.

Sifuentes requested that SGA President James Robertson Jr. call a special senate meeting to appoint a third election commissioner so the commission will have a
quorum when approving election plans and ruling on candidate complaints.

"By not appointing three commissioners by (its) January 30 meeting, SGA violated the election code," Sifuentes said. "All plans set by the commission are void
without a quorum."

Robertson answered questions in February concerning his appointment of only two commissioners, saying two were enough to run last year's election.

"I have enormous faith in (Election Commissioner) John Martinez," he said.

An Election Commission decision placing the election on Tuesday and Wednesday of next week, instead of Wednesday and Thursday violates the election code,
Sifuentes said. And a commission decision to extend the election calendar past March 31 also violates the code.

"We are dealing with a time constraint," Martinez said of changes to the calendar. "Those were the dates we could get with the Cougar 1Card people and others
aiding the election."

Students will be permitted to vote only if they present their Cougar 1Card, unlike in years past when students could also use their driver's license.

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