Students accuse ASCSU of playing politics, intimidation

Haley Candelario

Students expressed their frustrations with the Colorado State University government Wednesday night, because they feel the senate body has not done any work for the student body since they started meeting. 

Man speaking.
Juan Caro, chairman of the Conservative Interest Group, speaks to the ASCSU Senate on Oct. 18, 2017 about their recent impeachment proceedings senators being pressured into signing the impeachment documents. (Colin Shepherd | Collegian)

Juan Caro, chairman of the Conservative Interest Group and a former senator for the Associated Students of Colorado State University, said senators were intimidated into signing the impeachment petitions brought forth by Sen. Cerridwyn Nordstrom against ASCSU President Josh Silva.

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“Proponents of this impeachment petition have been aggressive,” Caro said. “They’re intimidating people, from what I hear, into signing legislation. People should not be threatened because of your political agenda. That’s unacceptable.”

Caro said he did not think senate has done any work because they have been preoccupied with impeachment petitions this year and in years previous.

“This body is a notorious waste of time,” Caro said. “All you guys do is impeach people. You’re not serving the students whatsoever.”

Caro said he faced impeachment in 2015 for making a Hooters joke in the ASCSU offices and former ASCSU Senator Kwon Atlas faced impeachment in 2014. Daniela Pineda Soraca, the student body president for the 2016-2017 year, was questioned about the legitimacy of her campaign following her election in April 2016.

Sen. Connor Cheadle, who signed the petition against Silva, said there is no truth to Caro’s statements that senators were pressured into signing the impeachment petition.

“I think this concept that senators are getting pressured into (signing the impeachment petition) is just a wild goose chase to be honest,” Cheadle said. “We worked very, very, very hard with this impeachment proceeding to simply just inform the senators. (We’re) not saying, ‘You have to sign this.’”

Sen. Mariah Wang said while she felt pressured to sign the impeachment petition, she was not pressured by the author of the document or anyone who helped with the document.

“It was still up to me to put my name on the petition,” Wang said. “We just want ASCSU to form …  an impeachment committee, so we can get more information, and I trust that the committee will do a good job. They will be unbiased, and we can go from there and make a decision.”

Joel Crank, a sophomore studying business administration, told the senate body that they needed to focus less on the impeachment in order to focus on issues that directly impact students on campus.

“I am a little bit disgruntled by the inability of ASCSU to take care of any of the problems that we, the student body, have elected you to take care of,” Crank said. “Every year … these issues continue to pile up. Every year they’re overlooked by, again and again, an impeachment attempt, which takes up all of your time, so you can’t deal with Clark or parking or tailgating or the other multitude of problems CSU faces.”

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Members of ASCSU’s senate leadership told the senate body that the body has done more work so far this year than the 46th senate did. According to Parlimentarian Zachary Vishampayan, the current senate body has passed more legislation at this point in the year compared to the last year’s senate body.

Speaker Pro Tempore Yuval Rosenthal said the body should not be discouraged by Caro’s or Crank’s comments.

“I know some of the comments made earlier today might be somewhat discouraging, but please let that fuel your fire,” Rosenthal said. “Keep doing your job, and obviously, you guys all rock.”

Chief Justice Brittany Anderson said the impeachment committee will enter another week of evidence gathering, in order for Silva to bring forward evidence that he did not violate any of the ASCSU governing documents.

Collegian News Director Haley Candelario can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @H_Candelario98.