Jul 07, 2020

ASI overturning decision unseats presumptive senators

With the overturning of seven candidates’ previous disqualifications, there are now six new members of the Associated Students Inc. (ASI) senate.

Pedro Ramirez, Amy Wilson, Luis Sanchez and Alexandro Garcia, who all belonged to the P.E.D.R.O. slate, are now senator’s at-large as a result of Dr. Paul Oliaro, vice president of student affairs, choice to reverse their initial disqualification.

The four will replace Maddie Shannon, Eduardo Rodriguez, Julianne Phillips and Peter Casacca who were all announced on April 23 to have won senate at-large positions as a result of the disqualification.

Election numbers show that Shannon, Rodriguez, Phillips and Casacca did not receive enough votes in the election to win positions.

Julianne Phillips said she was excited to have won the position and felt that the Student Court’s decision to disqualify all members of P.E.D.R.O. was justified.

“I felt the PEDRO candidates had made very poor decisions in their sleazy campaign,” Phillips said.

“It was very clear to me that they gave no regard whatsoever to the bylaws and chose to ignore the rules simply because they did not like them.”

Phillips and others believe that the Student Courts decision to initially disqualify all 10 members of P.E.D.R.O. should have been upheld because she feels all members were part of each of the violations and that is the consequence of being on a slate.

However, Oliaro felt differently and said that despite the fact that all 10 people ran together he viewed them individually when it came to overturning the decision.

Garcia said his initial reaction to the disqualification was shock.

He said the situation became hectic very quickly, but now he is thankful for Oliaro’s decision and concentrated on his future.

“My plans now, are to hopefully serve as the new senator of Legislative Affairs,” Garcia said.

“I have lobbied with other students before in the Capital to fight against cuts to the CSU system and would love to continue working with students and CSSA to keep higher education affordable.”

Ramirez said he felt a sense of shock just like Garcia when he first heard of the disqualification.

But now he says he is simply happy the university served justice and wants to make it clear that a sense of peace is in ASI.

“One thing must be made clear and mentioned, we are not out to get revenge nor are we out to be a thorn and disrupt the university,” Ramirez said.

“We want to be part of the group and work with everyone who was elected, no matter how bitter the election was. We need to unify for the rights and needs of the students.”

In addition to the four member of P.E.D.R.O. who are now senators at-large, two others had their disqualifications overturned and are now senators of colleges.

Jonathon Thompson, who ran unopposed, is now the senator for the college of science and mathematics while Jamie San Andres, who was also reinstated, will fill the position of senator of social sciences.

Jessica Sweeten the new ASI president said she is optimistic about the future with the new senate.

“Dr. Oliaro made the decision he felt thought was right under the circumstances,” Sweeten said.

“We are going to begin building a relationship with the new senators and hopefully have a successful year.”

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