Student Union officials aren’t denying allegations that they broke the Student Code in their campaign to place the UCommons referendum on the Feb. 8 ballot.
Instead, they’re denying that the Student Code applies to them at all.
On Feb. 7, Adam Horowitz, a Student Congress member, filed a lawsuit claiming Andrew Phillips, chairman of the Board of Elections, and Student Body President Hogan Medlin broke the Student Code by allowing a place on the ballot for a referendum to renovate the Union’s bottom floor.
Tony Patterson, senior associate director of student life and activities, said Phillips informed him that the Union’s posting of campaign materials and petitioning in academic buildings would be violations for a student or student organization.
Patterson said Phillips “did his job” and came forward with the information.
“Title VI defines a campaign as including referenda and there is a specific clause preventing referenda groups from posting information outside the Union,” Phillips said.
But Patterson said the Union ultimately used its own interpretation.
Don Luse, director of the Union, said his staff considered Phillips’ warning, but ultimately went ahead with plans to place campaign materials on University buildings and petition within academic buildings.
Those officials and Horowitz have acknowledged that the events of this year will require a clarification of Title VI of the Code, which deals with elections.