Paul Kushner, chairperson of the UNC Board of Elections, said elections will be moving forward as planned today — just without the student body president portion. Students can vote for other offices and on the referendum to split student government at studentlife.unc.edu until 8 p.m. tonight.
Kushner said the injunction on the student body president elections will not delay hearings for complaints, including the ones filed against student body president candidates Maurice Grier and Elizabeth Adkins.
“I was specifically told that the hearings are not paused as part of this injunction — this is merely a pause on voting,” Kushner said.
The hearings are both scheduled for Friday.
The UNC Student Supreme Court’s injunction pausing student body president elections comes after Travis Broadhurst, a write-in candidate for student body president, filed a complaint against the BOE to the UNC Student Supreme Court.
His complaint said the BOE did not properly apply the rules for certifying the required 1,250 signatures needed for a candidate to be on ballot. According to the complaint, the Board of Elections has historically required all signatures to be Onyen-verified, meaning the student signing a petition must provide their Onyen and corresponding password for it to be valid.
“The fact that Onyen verification, as the term is used in the Student Code, requires a password is further supported by the entire purpose of Onyen verification — fraud prevention,” the complaint said.
The complaint said the board improperly validated signatures gathered by Grier and Adkins. The complaint said if they had been properly validated, it is likely neither Grier nor Adkins would have made it on the ballot.
After receiving the complaint on Tuesday, the Student Supreme Court paused student body presidential elections indefinitely. The BOE has until Friday at noon to file any documents with the Supreme Court, who will then deliberate. The court then decides if they want to hold a trial, dismiss the case or give a new order.
Kushner said he thinks the process for a Student Supreme Court case is going the way it should so far.
“We were officially served today by the marshal of the Student Supreme Court, and we’ve got until noon on Friday to file any pretrial motions, answers, things like that,” Kushner said.
Adkins said her campaign was still waiting Wednesday afternoon for official word from the Student Supreme Court on how to move forward. Her campaign has put a hold on all activities for now.
“I have heard from the BOE that we are still allowed to campaign,” Adkins said. “They have just moved the actual day of the election.”
Grier declined to comment.