Hey all. We’re at the much-maligned Union Judiciary trial. The Senate is trying to impeach the Union Secretary, Diana Aronin, because she forgot to put up a constitutional amendment for a vote or something.
Honestly, I approach this trial with mixed feelings. On one hand, it’s bullshit. On the other hand, we should probably cover it. We’ll see if it lasts.
Read on for a running commentary on the trial
You know what’s (even) more hilarious than this trial?
26 responses to “The Senate/E-Board showdown begins”
[…] Diana Aronin. Diana was impeached by the Senate (and the Judiciary unanimously voted to approve) for some bullshit. The Union Senate (as well as perhaps the Union Judiciary) have just been handed a giant slap in […]
Sahar, this is a valuable service you provide.
So I was at the trial, and I just wanted to clear up some misconceptions:
1) There was no finger pointing. There was an explanation of the facts. As I understood them, Hogan is Aronin’s superior (I double checked this fact with the Constitution, Article III Section 2). So yea, he is in charge of her actions. Furthermore, in regards to the analogy above, I’m pretty sure that the hypothetical situation in very close to the actual situation, so I’m not really understanding your point of contention.
2) Aronin and Hogan both acted within the Constitution, so there is no fault here and no finger to point.
3) Ryan Fanning referred to the basis of his argument as being “ludicrous.” Yes, Ryan, it is.
4) Lastly, I just want to point out this interesting fact that I learned at the trial, take it as you will:
The person pushing for this amendment is apparently NOT a member of the Student Union. Can he amend the Constitution? Man, I hope not, because if he can, so can the homeless man on the street. I’m sure that he would love something to pass granting him permanent rights to live in one of the dorms.
I’m just confused. I thought that the Constitution was for us…the members of the Union. So, you know, all the stuff in the Constitution is for us. I guess I was wrong. It apparently can be for us, for Tufts, for UCLA, hey, even for the Middle East. If only the nations in the Middle East abbided by the Brandeis University Undergraduate Student Union Constitution…I’m sure there would be peace. All they would need to do is pass an amendment. Apparently they can.
on the one hand, it sounds like diana screwed up, the constitution gives the secretary the responsibility to manage elections and referenda and the like, and apparently she didn’t do it correctly. From the commentary on this blog it seems like she was waiting for the president to tell her what to do, but constitutionally the President isn’t in charge of telling the Secretary what to do.
IMHO the secretary should be running the behind-the-scenes stuff in accordance with the president’s vision, but it’s the secretary’s job to advice the president on this stuff. Case in point, the secretary tells the President, “hey, there’s an election coming up, here’s all the things that need to get done and here’s how I plan on doing them,” and the president says “great job, keep me posted,” or “that timeline sounds a little odd, why don’t you move the sign-up date forward” or whatever.
An analogy: SecState Hillary Clinton is subordinate to President Obama, but she doesn’t sit around waiting for Barack to tell her what to do in every situation. She makes independent judgments, and keeps him in the loop. She (should) know more about a particular situation or issue, advise the president on it based on her knowledge, make a recommendation, and either see that recommendation approved or denied by the president.
On the other hand, it sounds like the senate is acting in a way typical of the senate–making controversy for the sake of controversy over what is essentially a non-issue. Diana’s mistake, from what I understand, amounts to little more than a technicality. It may be a symptom of a greater problem–i.e. she should be running things a little more independently rather than waiting for hogan to tell her what to do.
But there are more mature ways to deal with that than fake-impeaching someone in the fake-legislature, and then taking them to the fake-court to fake-sue them over a non-issue.
I am blowing this popsicle stand. Adam Hughes will take over
The assorted Justices are clearly the best dressed in the room.
The logical extension of his argument is that Osama bin Laden, were he to meet the same criteria, would also be allowed to submit an amendment.
I’m not cool with that.
Ryan argues that President Obama is allowed to submit constitutional amendments, as long as 15% of the school or 10 senators signed a petition to make that happen.
I’m cool with that.
Ryan can’t decide if the Senate is allowed to meet over, say, break, as long as there is a quorum.
Why does this matter? The vote to impeach Diana had the votes of 2/3 of those senators who showed up, but not 2/3 of all senators, if I understand correctly.
OK so Ryan is up doing oral arguments for his case. This means that Judah asks him questions and Ryan tries to answer.
He is not doing very well.
My feelings on the trial:
Andy Hogan is not here, dude. He’s in NY spending time with his lovely girl. I’m pretty sure Diana is blaming Andy, but maybe I understand her wrong.
Am I correct in understanding your comments as suggesting Hogan and Aronin are more pointing fingers at one another than they are defending one another?
The trial is on break at the moment.
The arguments as I understand them:
Diana – The application was shady and unconstitutional, so I asked Andy what to do. He dropped the ball.
Ryan – Diana has free will. She shoulda gotten that shit DONE
Not at the Trial:
Andy Hogan, President. He’s accused by Diana of dropping the ball.
Jenna Rubin, Executive Senator of the Union. She’s behind this impeachment business, and the one making the accusation.
Liat Slyper, Union Justice.
This is a farce, man. A farce.
Ryan Fanning asks if Diana has the power to interpret the constitution.
Ryan Fanning accuses Diana of subverting the constitution because she excluded non-undergraduates from the undergraduate student union.
Man I can’t believe they’re getting into an argument over the extent of Andy Hogan’s domination of Diana Aronin.
No seriously. Diana’s like “I do what Andy tells me” and Ryan Fanning (the guy suing to impeach her) is all “you have free will! Open your mind man”
(those were facetious quotes there. Youc a tell because I said the world “like”)
Judah Marans subscribes to the Igloo theory of jurisprudence. He doesn’t want us to get “heated. Physically or emotionally.” (I think that’s a direct quote, whatever).
The questions that Diana’s lawyer is asking her sound like this: “Were you doing this thing because of the constitution and your duties were this and that’s why you had to do what you did?”
Oh can I point out that we basically had to BREAK IN to the IBS to get to the trial? Only ninjas are allowed to access JUSTICE apparently
Aaaand Leah’s cellphone goes off. Cellphones aren’t SERIOUS BUSINESS apparently
Diana’s defense seems to be that she was never constitutionally mandated to put up the constitutional amendment up for a vote, due to a bunch of technicalities, such as, like, the person who asked her to do so wasn’t a Brandeis undergraduate.
Diana is being questioned by her “lawyer”.
Diana – my job is to be Andy Hogan’s sycophant. “His authority over me is constitutional… He is my superior.”
I dunno you guys this language is creeping me out.
Ok so we missed the beginning because honestly we couldn’t be bothered to stop eating lunch early to go.
So sue me.
This is such bullshit. Impeachment over a procedural issue.
Student Union Senate at its worst.
And we’re off! We got here kind of late – Judah Marans knows that this trial is SERIOUS BUSINESS!!!! and expects us to treat it as such.