The IU Student Government Election Commission announced Tuesday night it will disqualify Inspire for two violations resulting in a deduction of 12 points and will investigate three of the 18 complaints the Inspire campaign filed against the Elevate and Legacy tickets.
The IUSG Election Commission ruled to accept one of the 10 complaints Inspire submitted against Elevate and two of the eight complaints Inspire submitted against Legacy, the commission said in an Instagram direct message Tuesday.
As of Tuesday night, the IUSG Election Commission found Inspire guilty of two telecommunications violations. According to the IUSG Election Commission’s official complaint response, one of the violations resulted in automatic disqualification.
By accepting a complaint, the IUSG Election Commission agrees to further investigate the alleged election violation. After conducting its own investigation, the commission must decide by a two-thirds majority vote if the involved ticket is responsible for the election violation. Each violation results in a point deduction with more severe violations deducting more points. If a ticket loses 10 points or more, it is disqualified.
The Inspire campaign compiled a list of more than 10,000 contacts via its “Save IU’S Fall and Spring Break Petition.”
The commission’s official complaint response said current IUSG members promoted the petition and Inspire failed to offer recipients a way to opt-out of communication, therefore committing an election violation. According to the IUSG bylaws, any election violation involving more than 5,000 people results in a deduction of 10 points, an automatic disqualification.
The IUSG Election Commission found Inspire guilty of another telecommunications violation because Inspire continued to send campaign messages even after recipients asked them to stop. This election violation resulted in a 2-point deduction.
The IUSG Election Commission said in an Instagram direct message that it will accept Inspire’s complaint claiming Elevate sent out a mass email March 21 and a mass text message April 2 without any information on how to opt-out. IUSG bylaws require that all emails, texts or calls sent by a campaign must clearly offer an option to receive no further communication, which Inspire claims in its formal complaint Elevate did not do.
The IUSG Election Commission will accept a similar complaint against Legacy. In its formal complaint, Inspire claims Legacy failed to provide a clear way to opt-out of unsolicited mass messages.
The second complaint the IUSG Election Commission accepted against Legacy alleges that Legacy campaign staff members harassed and intimidated voters with aggressive messages and tweets, according to Inspire’s formal complaint.
Inspire included screenshots in its complaint showing that people who posted their support of the Inspire campaign on Instagram received messages from Legacy staff members claiming that supporting Inspire perpetuates “racist rhetoric.”
According to IUSG bylaws, the commission does not have to explain its reasons for dismissing a complaint. However, in a statement to the IDS, the commission said it will publicly release formal dismissals that explain some of its rationale later this week.