The last few weeks of February have been filled with drama for Florida State University’s Student Government Association. Earlier this month, FSU students filed articles of impeachment against student body president Johnathan Levin and his face president, Nastassia Janvier.
The reasons for the call of impeachment against Levin included the failure to appoint student body supreme court justices, disclosing of private information to a private student, and the failure to advertise and take minutes of official student government meetings.
Janvier’s charges included hazing and the failure to conduct a proper candidate interview for student government positions. According to FSUNews.com, during an interview Janvier asked candidates to sing during an interview that fits their “current mood and feeling in their season of life.” This was seen as hazing because, according to Florida State’s student code of conduct, “Forced activity that could adversely affect the mental health or dignity of a reasonable person.”
Janvier argued that she did not force anyone to sing during the interview process and that it did not affect whether or not the candidate would be selected. “There were people who did not sing who got appointed onto the cabinet,” she said.
During the impeachment hearings, the two students who originally claimed that they were uncomfortable when asked to sing during their interview clarified that their words were taken out of context, and that they did not feel like they were being hazed by Janvier. The two students also said that they felt as though the charges were not an impeachable offense.
Levin was also accused of not fulfilling a lawful subpoena. The subpoena directed Levin to acquire all text messages that he sent to Student Senate members during Student Senate meetings that occurred on July 7–8.
Levin shared during the hearing that when he received the subpoena, he reached out and received legal guidance from civil attorneys in order to see the steps that he should take after being issued the subpoena.
Kelvin Ready, the Student Senate attorney general at FSU said, “To the best of my knowledge and research there’s nothing prescribing a subpoena power to a student government.”
Ready also argued that the student government is considered an extracurricular activity and should not be treated as real government. However, this argument was proved invalid by Sen. Johnathan Marcus, who gave multiple instances where there have been student court cases that upheld valid subpoenas.
The call for impeachment was terminated for Janvier with a vote of 7-0 against the impeachment, and 32-11 against impeachment with one abstention for Levin.
Levin and Janvierdid not respond to multiple requests for comment by The Famuan.
FSU student Bryan Gonzalez said, “I think it might give the student body a bit more hesitation and pause before voting for a candidate in the future.”