ASCSU discusses new Constitution, unanimously formalizes Women’s Caucus

Stuart Smith

At their first Senate session after the mid-semester break, the Associated Students of Colorado State University dealt with issues that would affect them and other students for years.

Changes to impeachment procedure proposed in new ASCSU Constitution

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One proposed change of ASCSU’s Constitution would be in the process of impeachment. One concern over the revisions was that CSU President Tony Frank might not sign off on the Constitution, and Senators Kevin Sullivan and Tamera Breidenbach questioned whether that might lead to the dissolution of ASCSU.

“As I understand it, Tony (Frank) has to sign off on the Constitution every year,” Sullivan said. “If he didn’t wouldn’t that mean that we don’t have a Constitution? … If we didn’t have a Constitution, would we be an organization?”

Jason Johnson, general counsel for Colorado State University, assured the body that student government would not be dissolved.

“ASCSU doesn’t cease to exist,” Johnson said. “You have a Constitution right now, and we’re working on a new Constitution.”

ASCSU President Michael Wells responded to Sullivan’s question of if the body did not have a constitution by stating even if Frank did not sign off on a first draft, they would continue to work for one he would approve of.

“If he doesn’t sign right away, we’re going to work on it to figure out what we can do . . . in agreement with everyone in the University,” Wells said.

The main change to the impeachment process would be the addition of interim measures to discipline members without jumping to impeachment. Everything up to an impeachable offense would be handled internally, instead of the dual-track impeachment that is currently in place.

Wells closed the discussion by emphasizing that it was still only preliminary, and the purpose was to find out what the body thought.

“The plan is to make sure that by the end of the year, we have this in a bill that can be ratified by the body to amend . . . the Constitution in a way that we see fit for both parties,” Wells said.

Women’s Caucus Bill unanimously passes after debate

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A bill to formally establish the newly-formed women’s caucus was passed unanimously Wednesday night, 26-0-0. The bill was co-written by Senator Merall Sherif and Speaker of the Senate Isabel Brown.

However, a period of debate preceded it, with several changes made to the wording of the bill before a roll call vote.

The main point of contention was on the pronouns and inclusivity of the bill.

Senators Corbin Hart and Ben Amundson both asked about language about men in the bill, such as allowing them in the caucus at all and the chair explicitly being limited to women.

It was decided that all genders could be members, but only women would be allowed to chair the caucus, as the goal of the caucus is to empower women.

“I think it only holds up to the integrity … of the project and work we are trying to do to have the chair be a woman,” Sherif said.

Sherif also expressed her efforts in making the wording of the bill as inclusive and diversifying as possible.

“Different groups experience different concerns and different issues and different forms of discrimination at different volumes,” she said. “(This) is an intersectional feminist piece of legislation.”

The caucus’s next event will host Dr. Blanche Hughes in the ASCSU Chambers next month.

Religious exemption policy on syllabi resolution passes unanimously

A resolution to show that ASCSU is in support of allowing students to be exempted from class on the holidays of their religion, as most syllabi only allow for more mainstream, Christian holidays also passed unanimously.

Senator Josh Williams expressed his support for the resolution, and said it was “absolutely necessary.”

“I believe this going to be something tangible that we can do for people that do identify that strong religious beliefs and do have holidays and things that professors may not be aware about,” Williams said.

Editor’s note: This article has been updated with quotes from various Senators in attendance at the Senate session on March 21.

Editor’s note: A previous version of this incorrectly referred to Senator Tamera Breidenbach as Michaela Breidenbach.

Collegian Assistant News Editor Stuart Smith can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @notstuartsmith.