Tuesday, March 06, 2007

"University politics are vicious precisely because the stakes are so small"

This story brings to mind that title quote from Henry Kissinger.
The senator representing the Interfraternity Council lost his seat late last semester after missing three required Student Government meetings.

John Constantinide, the speaker of the SG Senate, informed sophomore Adam Guercio of his removal on Nov. 2 via email.

Guercio petitioned the SG Supreme Court at a Jan. 31 trial, claiming that one special meeting he missed, an SG retreat on Oct. 1, could not be classified as mandatory under the constitution.
[...]
He [Guercio] said he arrived five minutes late to the Academic Affairs Committee meeting on Oct. 18, but not did believe he was absent. The head of the committee, Michele James, was absent and Brandon Gross, the speaker pro tempore, was the acting chair for that meeting.
[...]
Guercio did not sign in because he believed Gross saw him and would take attendance the way James did, visually. James confirmed via email that she writes down everyone's name, types them up with the minutes and sends it to the speaker pro tempore, Gross.
[...]
One month and a half after the meeting, an investigation led by Constantinide looked into whether or not Guercio attended that meeting.

During the investigation, Russ Haws, the freshman senator, told Associate Justice Emily Cook on Nov. 16 that that he was 99 percent sure that he was at the meeting, and if he was, he was sitting next to Guercio. A copy of the sign-in sheet obtained by The Miami Hurricane verifies that Haws was in attendance.

Haws confirmed this and, Constantinide said, was the only one to remotely recollect seeing Guercio, which the former IFC senator attributes to expanse of time between the 15-minute meeting and the investigation.
[...]
Guercio said he told Haws of the investigation while they were walking back from the dining hall. The two live next door to each other.

"I wasn't trying to influence it in my favor," Guercio said, adding that he told Haws to answer as a senator, not as a friend or a fraternity brother. Both are members of Sigma Phi Epsilon. "Answer ethically and what you believe is correct."
See? No ethics problem here.

Perhaps the senator was absent because he was helping with Greek Week.
During closing ceremonies, the Greek Week executive board announced the winners of Greek Week 2007 from the second floor balcony of the Panhellenic building. The final overall champions were Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity and Delta Phi Epsilon sorority.

Removed SG senator contests decision - News