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SGA in talks to reopen election qualifications

The Student Government Association (SGA) is considering reopening qualifications for the presidential elections after only one ticket emerged on the initial deadline March 13.

Sophomore Class President Jadon Murad opened a discussion about reopening the elections during the Senate meeting March 18.

“I think it looks lackluster on SGA to only have one ticket and have a lack of promotions for the qualifications,” Murad said at the meeting.

Murad said SGA did not share any infographics, emails or social media posts with the student body announcing the meeting.

Both Freshman Sen. Sheridan King and Junior Sen. Hayes Rule said they had been approached by students interested in running after the deadline for qualifications had passed.

Genesis Cooper, sophomore senator and chair of the public relations and elections committee, said she was partly to blame for the information not being shared.

“As (public relations) chair, I feel like I did kind of drop the ball,” Cooper said.

Murad said SGA could come under scrutiny because the only confirmed candidates for 2019-2020 president and vice president are Adam Penland and Michaela Jones. Penland is the current president of SGA, and Jones is a junior senator.

Penland said he had nothing to do with the outcome of the elections.

“I have nothing to do with the elections. I always tell this joke, I am not Brian Kemp,” he said, referring to criticism against Kemp for choosing not to step down from his former role of secretary of state, instead overseeing a gubernatorial race he was running in.

“I am not going to be election marshall and also in the election,” Penland said.

SGA could not take action regarding reopening qualifications at the meeting because Election Marshall James Smith was not in attendance.

Penland said that Smith and Dean of Students Doug Pearson, the faculty advisor for SGA, would meet to discuss matters further Tuesday.

The Cluster will continue to update this report as information becomes available.

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