North Texas Daily

Letter to the editor: Plans to override the SGA president’s veto

Letter to the editor: Plans to override the SGA president’s veto

Letter to the editor: Plans to override the SGA president’s veto
April 23
16:36 2019

By Shane Warren | SGA Senator 

To the student body of UNT:

This letter will serve as a timeline of the Supreme Court decision that serving a term means that either the Student Government Association president or vice president has to be in the SGA office at all times. It will also serve as an argument for the Senate’s overwhelming majority vote to declare a mistrial regarding this decision and for my decision to try and override the president’s veto.

1. Yolian and Hillary, the current president and vice president-elect, announce their campaigns. During the summer, they both have internships at the same time for a few weeks. They plan to work around it by answering student queries remotely and staying long enough to have a summer senate meeting to appoint [an acting] speaker for summer senate.

2. An anonymous student asks the Supreme Court if serving a term from the summer 2019 to spring 2020 means that either the president or the vice president has to be physically in the SGA office starting in June 1. The Supreme Court says yes with no hearing or investigation.

3. Since this decision attacks her potential presidency in the middle of an election, President-elect Yolian files a procedural appeal to the Senate in accordance with our bylaws (Article IV, Section 2).  As a senator going through the bylaws and constitution, I find a strong argument for declaring a mistrial. This argument is outlined below:

A. The Student Constitution (Article VI, Section 6, Subsection A) gives only the Senate the power to establish Supreme Court procedures through our bylaws.

B. Numerous requirements for a hearing, such as notifying concerned parties in advance, allowing them a chance to defend themselves and gathering a case brief with evidence were ignored, in violation of our bylaws. (Article IV, Section 1)

C. If the Supreme Court did anything other than a hearing, it invented a procedure that was never established by the Senate. The Constitution, once again, gives only the Senate the ability to make judicial procedures. (Article VI, Section 6, Subsection A).

D. Though the Supreme Court may have unconstitutionally invented procedures in the past, the Senate did not act because we require an appeal before declaring a mistrial and we follow the rules. In this case, our procedures were violated, a procedural appeal was made and we decided to declare a mistrial.

We declare a mistrial for these reasons, which focus on Senate bylaws. The president’s objections seem mainly focused on the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court, which is addressed in a completely separate resolution up for reading during this Wednesday’s Senate meeting.

I’m going to try and override this veto, as refusing to declare a mistrial unnecessarily hampers our president-elect’s ability to do her job and makes a mockery of judicial procedure.

I’m also going to advocate for a separate resolution concerning what powers the Supreme Court does and does and does not have.

If you’re interested in the deliberations, please come to the Senate meeting this Wednesday, April 24 at 5:30 p.m. in Union 332.

Thank you,

C.L.A.S.S. Senator Shane Warren

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North Texas Daily

North Texas Daily

The North Texas Daily is the official student newspaper of the University of North Texas, proudly serving UNT and the Denton community since 1916.

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