2. Other nominees encountered more difficulty.
The R&J committee placed Elizabeth Kendrick, nominated for vice president, and Nikkia Jacques, nominated for attorney general, on the general orders calendar to speak in front of the Senate prior to a vote for approval.
Two candidates — Gabriela De Jesús, nominated for Honor Court chairperson, and Abbott Gaddy, nominated for honor system outreach coordinator, were placed on the unfavorable calendar and faced with the possible expiration of their nominations.
De Jesús was removed from the unfavorable calendar after multiple members of Student Government and attendees vouched on her behalf. After speaking in front of the Senate on the general orders calendar, she was quickly approved for the position and met with applause from the Senate.
Tanner Henson, chairperson of the R&J Committee, ultimately spoke favorably of De Jesús given the influx of information on her behalf, and chalked up her original placement on the unfavorable calendar to the lack of such information during the decision-making process.
“We also didn’t have all of these wonderful recommendations that have come in tonight,” Henson said. “All we can do is evaluate the information presented before us at the time.”
3. Debate broke out regarding partisan social media and its role in the confirmation process.
Honor system outreach coordinator nominee Abbott Gaddy encountered more obstacles to her approval, with Henson openly expressing his concerns about her qualifications. Henson took particular issue with Gaddy’s social media presence, referring to memes Gaddy had posted online that he felt unfairly targeted conservative students.
“Unfortunately, I don’t think that it’s necessarily a great idea to put people who have called conservatives white supremacists, hateful — and I’m reading off of her memes — I don’t think that is someone we necessarily want to put into the independent judiciary,” said Hanson, also mentioning that Gaddy’s interview for the position was lackluster.
Henson was likely referring to Gaddy’s posts in the UNC’s Facebook meme page, “Carol Folt's $4.25B Memorial Meme Stash (UNC)," of which Gaddy is a moderator.
The Senate took multiple votes before ultimately removing Gaddy from the unfavorable calendar, allowing her to speak in front of the Senate before a decision was made.
Still, after she speaking in front of the Senate on the general orders calendar, multiple Senate members remained uneasy about Gaddy’s “negative” social media presence and how her public views could alienate portions of the student body. The final vote left Gaddy unapproved for the position.
“This is not a duty taken lightly and I am confident in saying that the Rules Committee has served its purpose well over the course of the 100th session,” Henson said in a statement to the DTH. “If individuals are interested in the nomination process, or in specific nominees, I would encourage them to attend our meetings and make their thoughts and concerns known.”
4. Members of the Putnam administration said their goodbyes.
In their last Undergraduate Senate meeting, Savannah Putnam and her fellow executive officers highlighted successes of the past year and expressed their gratitude.
Putnam said that, after a busy year for Student Government, she is looking forward to being a “normal” student again.
“Some years are longer than others,” Putnam said. “And this year was certainly long.”