Election Code

Section 1: Election Committee – General Provisions

Statute 1.1: The election Committee shall be comprised of the Chair and four Members appointed as follows:

A) The Chair of the Election Committee shall be the outgoing President of the Students’ Government association, if he/she should be a senior. If the outgoing President is not a senior, he/she shall not serve on the Election Committee, and in such a case the Chair shall be the Executive Senior Senator.

B)
The four standing Members of the Committee shall be Senior Senators appointed by the Chair.

Statute 1.2: The Chair of the Election Committee shall be the Judge of Elections, and shall have day-to-day authority to rule on all questions arising from this Act, subject to appeal to a majority of the election committee.

Statute 1.3: The Election Committee shall meet no earlier than March 1st and no later than April 1st to affix the time for election to the Senate and Executive Offices.

Statute 1.4: The Election Committee, by majority vote, shall nominate three consecutive days in the month of April to conduct the Executive elections. The nomination must be approved by the Senate by majority vote.

Statute 1.5: The Election Committee, by majority vote, shall nominate three consecutive days in the month of April to conduct Senate elections. The days nominated must be no earlier than ten calendar days after the last day of voting for Executive offices. The nomination must be approved by the Senate by majority vote.

Statute 1.6: The dates for election must be nominated to the Senate no later than April 1st.

Statute 1.7: The Election Committee shall have final authority to interpret and enforce all rules and regulations regarding election to the Students’ Government Association.

Statute 1.8: Should the Senate elect, under Statute 7.2 of this Act to conduct an election by voting booth, the Election shall operate over the course of two consecutive days, which must be within the three consecutive days approved by the Senate.

Statute 1.9: Should the Senate elect, under Statute 7.2 of this Act to conduct an electronic election, the election shall remain open for the full three days approved by the Senate

Section 2: Pre-election Procedure

Statute 2.1: The Committee shall draft nominating petitions, including all necessary forms for candidates to submit qualifying documents, and shall establish a date when all materials shall be due to the Judge of Elections, no later than one week prior to the first day of voting for their offices.

Statute 2.2: The Committee shall set the date and time where each candidate may give a speech in support of his/her candidacy in a public forum prior to the first day of voting for their offices.

Statute 2.3: The Judge of Elections, or his/her designee, shall conduct all information sessions on the dates prescribed by the Committee, shall advise each candidate as to the Code of Election, and shall have authority to interpret any campaign rules as they relate to each candidate, subject to an appeal to a majority vote of the Committee (see further provisions of this Act).

Statute 2.4: The Committee shall publicize the dates of the elections in both written and Internet form continuously from a date no sooner than ten days prior to the election, to run continuously until the close of voting on the last day of the election.

Statute 2.5: The Committee shall meet not more than three days following the deadline for submission of all qualifying materials.

A): At said meeting, the Committee shall review each document from each candidate, and certify that it conforms to this Code.

B): Should a candidate have successfully completed all necessary nominating materials, he/she shall be notified in writing that his/her name has been placed on the ballot for election to the Senate or Executive Office.

C):
If, in the judgment of a majority of the Elections Committee, a candidate has not accurately or completely submitted all necessary qualifying materials, the Committee may employ one of two procedures.

C) 1): Should the Committee find, by majority vote, that the errors are minimal and could be easily corrected within twenty-four hours, the Committee shall notify the candidate in writing of such defects, and shall permit him/her to submit an amended petition not more than twenty-four hours from being notified.

C) 2):
Should the Committee find, by majority vote, that the errors are of a nature constituting a fatal defect, then the candidate’s name shall not be placed on the ballot, and he/she shall be notified in writing of this decision not more than twenty-four hours after it has been made by the Committee.

C) 3): This Sub-Section should be interpreted as allowing for the greatest reasonable ballot access, unless a candidate has demonstrably shown a disregard for this Code after being notified of its provisions and any rules prescribed by the Committee.

C) 4):
The decision of the Elections Committee under this Section may not be appealed.

D): No candidate shall be given access to the ballot if his/her signature requirements are not submitted in full by the deadline date. With the exception of emergency situations as agreed to by a 4/5 vote the Election Committee, failure to submit all necessary signatures shall constitute a fatal defect under C2 of this Subsection.

Statute 2.6: Once all candidates are certified, the Committee shall draft ballots according to the remaining provisions of this Act.

Section 3: Qualifications For Election To Executive Office

Statue 3.1: Article III of the Constitution of the Students’ Government Association shall be in full force and effect, and shall supersede any conflicting requirements set forth in this Section.

Statute 3.2: In addition to the requirements established in Article III of the Constitution, all candidates for President of the Students’ Government Association must submit the following nominating documents prior to their name being placed on the ballot:

A): A letter from the candidate certifying that their cumulative grade point average is equal to or greater than 3.0 This letter shall serve as authorization for the candidate’s Grade Point Average to be reviewed by the Dean of Students, who will then verify to the Committee that the candidate’s GPA is equal to or greater than 3.0.

B): A letter from the candidate certifying that he/she is not on any disciplinary probation that extends beyond the current academic year. This letter shall serve as authorization for the candidate’s disciplinary record to be reviewed by the Associate Dean of Students, who will then verify to the Committee that the candidate’s disciplinary status is satisfactory under this Statute.

C):
A nominating petition bearing the candidate’s name and office, and accompanied by 100 signatures of full-time day division undergraduate students with freshman, sophomore or junior standing.

Statute 3.3: In addition to the requirements established in Article III of the Constitution, all candidates for all Vice-Presidential Offices (Exec. Student Affairs, Public Affairs, Academic Affairs, Business Affairs), must submit the following nominating documents prior to their name being placed on the ballot:

A): A letter from the candidate certifying that their cumulative grade point average is equal to or greater than 2.75 This letter shall serve as authorization for the candidate’s Grade Point Average to be reviewed by the Dean of Students, who will then verify to the Committee that the candidate’s GPA is equal to or greater than 2.75.

B): A letter from the candidate certifying that he/she is not on any disciplinary probation that extends beyond the current academic year. This letter shall serve as authorization for the candidate’s disciplinary record to be reviewed by the Associate Dean of Students, who will then verify to the Committee that the candidate’s disciplinary status is satisfactory under this Statute.

C): A nominating petition bearing the candidate’s name and office, and accompanied by 100 signatures of full-time day division undergraduate students with freshman, sophomore or junior standing.

Section 4: Qualifications For Election To The Senate

Statue 4.1: Article III of the Constitution of the Students’ Government Association shall be in full force and effect, and shall supersede any conflicting requirements set forth in this Section.

Statute 4.2: In addition to the requirements established in Article III of the Constitution, all candidates for Senator must submit the following nominating documents prior to their name being placed on the ballot:

A): A letter from the candidate certifying that their cumulative grade point average is equal to or greater than 2.25. This letter shall serve as authorization for the candidate’s Grade Point Average to be reviewed by the Dean of Students, who will then verify to the Committee that the candidate’s GPA is equal to or greater than 2.5

B):
A letter from the candidate certifying that he/she is not on any disciplinary probation that extends beyond the current academic year. This letter shall serve as authorization for the candidate’s disciplinary record to be reviewed by the Associate Dean of Students, who will then verify to the Committee that the candidate’s disciplinary status is satisfactory under this Statute.

C):
A nominating petition bearing the candidate’s name and office, and accompanied by 50 signatures of full-time day division undergraduate students with the same class standing as the office sought (sophomore senator, junior senator, etc.)

Statute 4.3: All candidates for the office of Freshman Senator shall be exempt from Statute 4.2A of this Act.

Statute 4.4: For purposes of determining class standing, the credit scale of the University Registrar shall be used.

Section 5: Campaign Conduct

Statute 5.1: All candidates must submit flyers, posters, signs, hand-outs, and any other campaign materials related to their campaign to the Judge of Elections for approval prior to such materials being used.

Statute 5.2: The Judge of Elections shall approve or reject each piece campaign paraphernalia, and upon approval, the candidate shall have the appropriate Administrative office of the University approve its distribution.

Statute 5.3: A candidate may appeal a ruling of the Judge of Elections to the Election Committee, which shall hear the appeal within twenty-four hours, and decide the question by majority vote. The decision of the Committee cannot be appealed.

Statute 5.4: No funds from any La Salle University Agency or Budget Account may be used to finance any campaign.

Statute 5.5: Under no circumstances may a candidate speak, write, or conduct any action constituting negative campaigning.

A): The Election Committee shall determine by majority vote what actions constitute negative campaigning.

B): Any candidate found negatively campaigning by a majority vote of the Election Committee shall be disqualified, and his/her name shall be stricken from the ballot.

Statute 5.6: Candidates may seek office individually, or on a ticket of up to five (5) individuals total. In every case, a ballot shall contain the option for a student to vote by ticket or by individual.

Statue 5.7: At no time, and under no circumstances may a candidate or his/her designee(s) conduct any campaign activity within fifty (50) feet of any polling place.

Statute 5.8: No campaign paraphernalia may be distributed in classrooms.

Statute 5.9: The Judge of Elections shall have authority to enforce these rules by appropriate action, provided that no candidate is disqualified without a hearing before the Committee.

Section 6: Intentionally Omitted

This section was intentionally omitted.

Section 7: Election Procedure

Statute 7.1: The Senate shall, prior to April 1st, determine whether the election shall be conducted electronically or by voting booth.

Statute 7.2: Should the Senate elect a voting booth election, the provisions of this Section shall control. Should the Senate elect an electronic election, the provisions of Section 8 shall control.

Statute 7.3: At the appointed time and place, the Judge of Elections shall declare voting open, and shall ensure that the polling place is appropriately staffed by the Elections Committee, and only the Elections Committee, for a period of not less that one hour.

Statute 7.4: Any student, excluding graduating seniors is eligible to cast one ballot per election.

Statute 7.5: A student wishing to vote shall present his/her La Salle University identification card, sign his or her name and I.D. number on the voter rolls, and be given the appropriate ballot.

Statute 7.6: A student, when finished voting, shall either place the ballot into the appropriate receptacle provided by the Judge of Elections or hand the ballot to one of the members of the Election Committee, who shall place it in the appropriate receptacle.

Statute 7.7: Under no circumstances shall a student be required to reveal his/her choices for office, nor shall any Election Committee member attempt to influence, beyond explanation of how to fill out the ballot, the choice of each student elector.

Statute 7.8: At the appointed time for polls to close, the Election Committee Members shall open the ballot receptacles and place each ballot into an envelope. The envelope is then to be immediately sealed and bear the signature of the Judge of Elections or his/her designee, as well as the date and time.

Statute 7.9: The ballots are to be transmitted sealed to the Dean of Students, who will hold the ballots under seal until they are requested by the Judge of Elections.

Statute 7.10: No ballots are to be opened, read, or counted until the appointed time prescribed by the Election Committee, and in all cases, conforming to this Act.

Statute 7.11: Absentee ballots are not permitted.

Section 8: Electronic Election Procedure

Statute 8.1: The Election Committee shall coordinate with the appropriate Administrative Office of the University to establish and conduct an electronic election.

Statute 8.2: The electronic election must be open to students for not less than three consecutive days.

Statute 8.3: The Election Committee shall have authority to rule on any disputes arising from the conduct of the electronic election. All accusations of misconduct shall be investigated by the Committee, with appropriate action being determined by a majority vote of the Committee.

Section 8.4: No candidate shall be disqualified without a hearing before the Committee, and without the concurrence of a majority vote of the Committee following a hearing.

Section 8.5: The Committee shall ensure that each student (excluding graduating seniors) shall be eligible to cast one and only one ballot per election.

Section 9: Opening And Counting Of The Ballots

Statute 9.1: Following the close of an electronic election, the Judge of Elections shall convene the Election Committee to review the results, and barring any challenges, ties or technical errors, shall proceed immediately with the Prescript of Certification.

Statute 9.2: Following the close of a voting booth election, the Judge of Elections shall request from the Dean of Students all ballots under seal, and thereby shall convene the Election Committee in Executive Session in the Senate Chamber for purposes of opening and counting the ballots.

Statute 9.3: The Elections Committee shall meet in the Senate Chamber for the counting of ballots. The Judge of Elections shall close and lock the door to the Chamber, and no person shall be admitted into the Chamber except the Elections Committee until the election results are announced.

Statute 9.4: The Prescript of Counting shall be as follows, and shall apply to both Senate and Executive Elections:

Step 1: The Judge of Elections shall open all envelopes and separate the ballots by class into different piles.

Step 2
: The Judge of Elections shall appoint one Validator and three Tellers from the Election Committee.

Step 3
: The Validator shall proceed to open the ballots from the sophomore class, examining each one individually. If the ballot has not been validly completed, he/she shall bring it to the attention of the Judge of Elections, who shall rule on the validity of the ballot. Should the Validator and Judge of Elections disagree, the Committee as a whole shall decide the question by majority vote. Any invalid ballot shall be discarded.

Step 4
: The Validator shall say aloud the names of each candidate voted for on each ballot.

Step 5
: Each Teller shall record, on separate lists, the name of each candidate receiving a vote as his/her name is read.

Step 6
: At the conclusion of the reading of all ballots from one class, the Tellers shall tally their results, and shall consult with each other.

Step 7
: Should the Tellers disagree in their total, the ballots shall be recounted until all Tellers agree to the result.

Step 8
: When all Tellers agree to the result, they shall communicate to the Judge of Elections the number of votes each candidate received, noting the winners.

Step 9
: Steps 2-9 are to be repeated for each class.

Statute 9.5: Should any ties occur between the first and fourth place finishers of any class for election to the Senate, the Elections Committee shall note the result, but shall take no further action.

Statute 9.6: Should any tie occur between the fifth place and the sixth place candidates, or between two or more candidates where one seat is in dispute in the Senate, an automatic recount shall be immediately ordered by the Judge of Elections.

A): Should the recount produce a different result, the Judge of Elections shall proceed to certify the results, but shall notify all candidates who were tied as of the first count, and shall inform each that they are entitled to an appeal of the result under this Section.

B):
Should the recount fail to produce a different result, the Judge of Elections shall, at the conclusion of the counting of all ballots, delay the certification of results, and shall summon the candidates to the Senate Chamber.

C):
At such time, the Judge of Elections shall announce the result to the tied candidates, and shall inform them that the election shall be decided by lottery.

C) 1): Either candidate may appeal the result of the recounted vote (should the recount end in a tie). In such a case, the Judge of Elections shall initiate the Prescript of Appeal at the request of either candidate (resulting in a second recount).

C) 2):
Should neither candidate request an appeal, or all appeals be exhausted without resolution, the Judge of Elections shall proceed with the remaining sub-sections.

C) 3):
In the presence of the Elections Committee and the candidates, the Judge of Elections shall, on ten separate equal size note cards for each candidate, place the name of each candidate in the center, and shall place all of the note cards into a closed receptacle. The Validator shall hold the receptacle while the Judge of Elections draws one note card. The name on the note card is the winning candidate. This procedure and result cannot be appealed.

Statute 9.7: Statute 9.8 shall apply to both Senate and Executive elections.

Statute 9.8: At the conclusion of all counting and appeals processes under this Section, the Judge of Elections shall proceed to certify the results.

Statute 9.9: Upon completion of the counting and appeals process, the Judge of Elections shall draft two documents, the first revealing the vote totals for each candidate of each class or office, the second declaring the five winners of each class or Executive Office.

Statute 9.10: The Judge of Elections and each member of the Elections Committee shall sign both documents, which shall then be transmitted to the President of the Senate, the President of the Students’ Government Association, and the Dean of Students. Whenever the documents certifying the vote totals and winners are signed and transmitted to the appropriate officers, the results are official, and the winners are Senators-Elect or Officers-Elect.

Section 10: Special Elections

Statute 10.1: Special elections may only be called under the authority of the Constitution of the Students’ Government Association.

Statute 10.2: All provisions of this Act shall be followed for all Special Elections, unless, in the judgment of 2/3 of the Senate, a different procedure is necessary, in which case the Senate may deviate from the provisions of this Act.

Statute 10.3: All provisions of this Act relating to dates or times specifically prescribed shall automatically be waived for all special elections.

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