J-Board to hear violation allegations

CARMEN JARAMILLO and CODY COTTIER

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Two election violation allegations were filed on Sunday and Monday against Zachary Anders, one of the ASWSU presidential candidates, for use of his personal Twitter account.

The ASWSU Judicial Board discussed the alleged violations at a meeting on Monday night and both are scheduled for hearings next Tuesday at 6:45 p.m. in CUB 310.

The first complaint, filed by Honors Delegate Savannah Rogers, stated that Anders had switched his personal Twitter to become the official Twitter of the Anders-Amos campaign. Anders denied this, saying he is allowed to use his personal Twitter account to campaign.

ASWSU Bylaw 610.08, which Rogers cites in the allegation, states, “Candidates may campaign using their own social media accounts.” It adds, “Accounts must be personal and in no way related to a previous office or have the previous accounts switched to accomplish the task of campaigning.”

Rogers stated in her allegation that she did not believe this was a fair use of his Twitter since his campaign Twitter would already start with 800 followers and other campaigns would start their Twitter profiles from scratch.

“This also means all personal opinions of Anders that were previously tweeted, are now associated with ASWSU, WSU and his campaign,” Rogers stated in her complaint.

Rogers also submitted examples of tweets she believed should not be associated with ASWSU.

The second allegation against Anders was filed by opposing presidential candidate Jordan Frost. Frost made reference to tweets from Anders’s account that he believed were personally attacking his character.

Frost stated in his allegation that he believed these tweets were in violation of Washington’s defamation laws, election codes, WSU Codes of Conduct and “the spirit of ASWSU elections.”

The tweets made reference to an incident that took place on Feb. 11. Johanna Matthynssens, a resident adviser (RA) in Stephenson North, said during a meeting in the CUB junior ballroom that Frost spoke down to her and made her cry.

Matthynssens said she burst into tears upon leaving the event and was very upset about what Frost had said to her.

Frost refuted these claims, saying that he did not talk down to her and that the content of their conversation was in regard to an email she had sent earlier in the week.

The email was sent by Matthynssens to all residential education directors and assistant hall directors (AHD) of the residence halls on campus. The email was what Anders referred to as a “heads up” that his campaign was going to want to reach out to students in the residence halls.

Anders said since campaigning was not allowed to start until after 5 p.m. on Friday, they used ambiguous language to say they were associated with ASWSU.

Frost was the recipient of one of these emails since he is the AHD of Olympia hall. He brought this email up to Matthynssens when they were paired together to do RA interviews over the weekend.

Frost said he told Matthynssens that this was not a clear representation of their intentions since they were intending to campaign and not just educate students about ASWSU.

Anders said there was going to be much more communication after the fact, and that he and his running mate Kai Amos had no intentions to mislead or misrepresent themselves.

Matthynssens said while in the conversation with Frost, he told her she should have known better and that he had lost respect for her. Frost denied making these statements.

“I would never attack or belittle someone,” Frost said.

He asserts that these are false claims and that he was unaware that Matthynssens had cried until after the fact.

Frost said that at the hearing next Tuesday, he has witnesses who will testify that the conversation between him and Matthynssens was civil and the claim in the tweet that he “screamed” is false.

Anders said he believes election violations are misused to politicize the process. He was the Election Board chair during last year’s ASWSU election and said he found such violations to be petty.

Due to a misunderstanding about whether the election violation allegations were public information, Justice Dalvin Yarbrough asked an Evergreen reporter to delete photos she took of the allegations and turn over notes following an interview about the Judicial Board’s dealings with the cases.

Though Yarbrough at first believed, rightly, that the allegations were public, Chief Justice Eden Kelshaw believed they were private until after the hearings next week. Yarbrough made the request after discussing the situation with Kelshaw.

The reporter complied with this request, not realizing she was not obligated to. After discussions between Evergreen Editor-in-Chief Cody Cottier and Judicial Board Chief Justice Eden Kelshaw, and between Cottier and Student Involvement Associate Director Rudy Trejo, the justices quickly complied and returned the notes. After realizing the allegations were public information, they also supplied those documents.