ASASU announces USGT executive runoff and misappropriated senate seats

USGT runoff campaigns begin April 17 due to senate seat misappropriations and no executive ticket winning a majority

The Palmer and Fees tickets will race against each other in a runoff for the Undergraduate Student Government Tempe executive office, Associated Students of ASU Elections Commissioner Carla Naranjo announced in a Zoom call on April 16. 

An executive ticket must have 50 plus one percent of votes to win the election. Due to neither the Palmer ticket, Fees ticket or the Leveque ticket reaching this mark, Palmer and Fees, the two tickets with the most votes, will go through a runoff.

"We're just excited to be going into this runoff," said Max Fees, presidential candidate and a junior studying civic and economic thought and leadership.

Fees said that he and his ticket were "disappointed" in the Elections Department for their high number of mistakes and lack of transparency. Fees said that he "doesn't see why students should be kept in suspense about results."

READ MORE: Results for some 2020 USG and GPSA elections announced

Jacqueline Palmer, a junior triple majoring in digital marketing, political science and business law, said her team is thankful to qualify for the runoff.

"I believe my ticket has the most qualifications and the most researched, impactful platform," said Palmer.

Palmer said she and her team are working on new plans to adjust their campaign in light of the announcement but will continue to push the ticket's core values. 

"We just want to continue to push our mission of inclusivity as we reach out to more and more students to show how we can help every single student on our campus," Palmer said.

Campaigning for the runoff begins on April 17. Voting will be April 21 and the results will be announced on April 22. 

The senate seats for Barrett, the Honors College, the Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences are also not being announced until those candidates compete in their own runoffs. 

Due to changes in student enrollment, the number of seats appropriated to these colleges on the 2020 candidate website does not accurately reflect what the elections code mandates, according to Naranjo. 

"We couldn't have foreseen this happening," Naranjo said, even though she had conceded earlier the seat miscount had been brought to her attention and she had conversations with supervisors, like Elizabeth Rosenkrantz, before election day.

"I am disappointed overall at the elections process," said Clay Robinson, senatorial candidate for The College and a freshman studying economics and civic and economic thought and leadership. 

Candidates from The College received an email around 4 p.m. for a meeting with the Elections Department at 5 p.m., where they were told the number of seats for Barrett, Fulton and The College had been misappropriated. This change would result in another seat for The College, but would reduce the number of seats for Barrett and Fulton.

According to Robinson, there should have been two seats for Barrett, four for Fulton and five for The College. 

Robinson said that candidates on the call were angry and argued that the Elections Department had overstepped bylaws.

Those same candidates received an email about 15 minutes before results were to be announced that said results would not be announced and they would all need to participate in the run-off election.

"The confusion could've been taken care of ahead of time, but it is what it is," said Robinson.


 Reach the reporters at ekgalin1@asu.edu and pjhanse1@asu.edu and follow @eringalindo29 and @piperjhansen on Twitter.

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