The Daily Tar Heel
Printing news. Raising hell. Since 1893.
Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023 Newsletters Latest print issue

We keep you informed.

Help us keep going. Donate Today.
The Daily Tar Heel

SBP candidate Joe Nail's disqualification ruled invalid by UNC Supreme Court

The Supreme Court placed an injunction against the Board of Elections until Bradley Opere, the current student body president, nominates at least two more members to the Board of Elections and these nominees are confirmed by Student Congress, giving the Board of Elections the required five members.

Candidates are allowed to continue gathering signatures for ballot petitions, which are due on Feb. 9 — already a delay past the original deadline because of the weekend’s water crisis. Campaign activity is suspended until a new election timeline is released by the Board of Elections.

Nail appealed the BOE decision to disqualify him from the student body president elections to the UNC Supreme Court.

Katharine Shriver, ethics chairperson for Student Congress and member of an opposing campaign team, filed a complaint on Jan. 28 dealing with unsolicited emails and recruitment by the Joe Nail for SBP campaign.

After a hearing with the Board of Elections on Feb. 2, Nail was disqualified as a candidate.

The Board of Elections originally found Nail guilty of two false starts, two technology violations and one falsification.

The Joe for SBP campaign appealed, saying they deny all the charges except for the false start charge.

“We continue to categorically deny all charges brought against our campaign, save for the false start charge relating to accidentally sent emails which we reported to the Board of Elections ourselves,” a statement from Joe for SBP spokesperson Andrew Brennen said. “Joe is already back on the campaign trail and will be focusing on the issues that really matter to students.”

The campaign admits to mistakenly sending out emails to an estimated 863 students who were not involved in his campaign, saying there would be a mandatory meeting.

“This meeting is for EVERYONE on the campaign, because we need to go over important details about how petition week and the campaigning period will work,” the email said.

The BOE gave the Joe for SBP campaign 29 points. Just 10 points is enough to be automatically disqualified, according to the Student Code’s Election Regulations.

“In this matter we cumulatively award the Nail Campaign 29 points and disqualify his candidacy for the position of Student Body President,” the BOE hearing decision said.

The Board of Elections found Nail’s campaign guilty of sending campaign emails before officially declaring his candidacy, falsifying information to the Board of Elections and campaign members recruiting rather than the candidate himself.

The Supreme Court decision said because the Board of Elections did not have the necessary five members, their ruling is invalid. It said the Board of Elections can’t conduct official business until it has the required membership.

“That the Board currently lacks sufficient membership to achieve a quorum renders not only this action in Shriver v. Nail illegitimate and invalid, but further prohibits the Board from conducting its official business, including the certification of election results,” the UNC Supreme Court decision said.

To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.