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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Supreme court to decide final fate of Tubbs

    Rhonda Tubbs
    Rhonda Tubbs

    The disqualified student government candidate who appealed to the elections commissioner was denied Friday and will take her case to the ASUA supreme court today in a final effort to be re-admitted to the campaign.

    Sen. Rhonda Tubbs said she will appeal the matter today at 12:30 p.m. to the Associated Students of the University of Arizona supreme court at the James E. Rogers College of Law.

    After receiving two major and two minor violations last week, Tubbs was disqualified from the race to become next year’s executive vice president.

    “”I owe it to the students to fight and appeal the matter to the best of my ability,”” said Tubbs, a finance senior. “”If I lose this case (today), then this is all I intend on pursuing the matter.””

    The court proceeding is expected to last 30 minutes, and the justices are expected to make the final ruling to determine whether Tubbs can re-enter the election, said Jordan Miller, the ASUA elections commissioner.

    According to the supreme court Web site, the ruling will be within 24 hours after the case is heard and a written report will be given within 10 days.

    While both Tubbs and Miller had the opportunity to appoint free legal counsel when they appear before the court today, Miller said, only Tubbs decided to pursue an advocate for her defense. The legal counsel will be a law student in the College of Law.

    Miller said today’s hearing by the supreme court is the final course of action Tubbs can take in appealing her disqualification.

    Tubbs said she will accept the court’s decision and won’t look for other means to challenge the verdict.

    According to the ASUA Web site under the supreme court tab, both Miller and Tubbs will have 15 minutes each to present their cases to the supreme court, five minutes of which can be used for later rebuttal.

    Both parties are welcome to bring witnesses to the proceeding, but the court may question any parties or witnesses in the audience, according to the Web site.

    The decision must be determined by a majority vote from the justices, according to the Web site.

    Miller, a marketing senior, said she upheld her decision in disqualifying Tubbs Friday after she handed Tubbs an “”in-depth”” written report, which outlined the elections code as well as each violation that Tubbs accrued.

    “”I figured this would happen,”” Tubbs said. “”But I understood (Miller’s) decision to uphold the elections code.””

    In her defense, Miller said the matter has come to this point because “”bottom line, the code was violated and I had to uphold my decision.””

    As elections commissioner, Miller said she thinks she’s been fair by upholding the code and that this year’s elections have been fair and objective across the board.

    Though the goal of the elections commission is to “”run a smooth and fair election,”” Tubbs said, she believes they aren’t upholding their duties this year and are instead policing the elections, leaving many candidates concerned if they’re running a fair campaign for office, she said.

    “”Many of the candidates are scared to campaign during this election for fear of violations or even disqualification,”” Tubbs said. “”It’s a horrible feeling to get kicked out of an election.””

    Tubbs said she had prepared a written statement of appeal to the Supreme Court over the weekend for today’s hearing.

    The statement will also allow Tubbs to express how she would rule against each violation brought against her and what the outcome should be.

    Tubbs, who said the charges against her “”are so minuscule,”” said the court could rule in her favor because it has previously overturned many decisions and rules in favor of the plaintiff in such matters.

    “”I hope the court realizes my situation and appeals in my favor,”” she said.

    Erin Hertzog, acting ASUA president, was unavailable for comment yesterday.

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