ASUCI Spring Elections Complaints Stall Results
Though most ASUCI Spring Elections Results were posted last Wednesday, decisions are still pending for the positions of President, seven At-Large Senators, Biological Sciences Senator, and Physical Science Senator, due to ongoing complaint appeals. Final results must be posted no later than 5 p.m. on Tuesday, May 2 at the Student Government and Student Media Office, as well as online at asuci.uci.edu/elections.
While the proceedings of complaints currently underway are not yet public, complaints have been filed against four of six presidential candidates, and several more candidates were investigated, sanctioned, or disqualified during elections week.
Four candidates, all members of the “Access UCI” slate, received a complaint for sharing an ASUCI Facebook post promoting elections week. No action was taken, as the post was intended to be shared by students.
Twelve candidates, including Presidential candidate Lydia Natoolo and many members of the “Valuing Your Voice” slate, received a complaint for not reporting a canopy tent on their financial statement. The Elections Commission took no action, as “the financial statement does not function as an accounting spreadsheet to which meticulous scrutiny shall be paid,” per Elections Code by-laws.
Two additional complaints were filed against presidential candidate Lydia Natoolo; one alleged that current ASUCI President Tracy La “colluded with [Natoolo]” by using her influence within ASUCI to promote Natoolo’s campaign, and also that as a student publication, the New University was not allowed to publish its April 18 editorial endorsement of Natoolo. The Elections Commission took no action, as they found La’s personal support of Natoolo to be within her rights as a UCI student. Further, the New University is an independent publication, and its editorial board may endorse any candidates.
Two complaints were filed against presidential candidate Carl Olson; one alleged that he “violated UCI’s trademark licensing policy by using UCI’s name” in his campaign materials. No action was taken against Olson, as he only used the “UCI” logo to market his campaign, and not to sell merchandise.
Siddharth Baranwal, Carl Olson and Anneus Garcia-Kawasaki were the only presidential candidates to receive punitive measures during their campaigns. Garcia-Kawasaki was disqualified for failing to turn in a financial statement. Baranwal received an endorsement from the Asian Pacific Student Association without turning in the proper endorsement form, and was given a level two punitive measure, which banned him from posting or distributing campaign material for three days. Carl Olson received the same level two punitive measure for failing to turn in an endorsement form from the TransPolitical Forum at UCI.
Overall, nine candidates were disqualified for failing to turn in their financial forms. At press time, no candidates were disqualified for other reasons, and the most severe punitive measures were level two restrictions on posting.