Court: No jurisdiction to oversee appeal

Members of the Student Supreme Court have decided they have no jurisdiction over the Electoral Commission’s case against Student Union and Activities Director Alice Mathis.

Chief Justice Jason Hurst said the court could handle appeals against the electoral commission or another candidate, but not against university staff members.

“We deliberated for about three hours on the appeal submitted from the electoral commission against defendant Alice Mathis,” Hurst said.

Once the court realized this case was out of its jurisdiction, Hurst admitted, “it was pretty open and shut.”

Hurst said he feels there was a lack of communication between the commission and Mathis.

“We found a lot of fault with what the Electoral Commission did and not as much with what Ms. Mathis did,” Hurst said. “We didn’t feel that the student vote was tampered with. As far as the Student Supreme Court is concerned, we uphold the decision to validate the election.”

Electoral Commissioner Tiffany Cartwright said the court’s ruling would not deter the commission.

“Being people of integrity, we could not sit on this information,” Cartwright said. “Our ultimate goal is to expose all of the shady stuff that goes on.”

Cartwright said the commission is taking the appeal to Patricia Green-Powell, the Vice President for Student Affairs.

“I did not see anyone try to cheat or stuff any ballots,” Cartwright said. “I just think the integrity of the election was compromised.”

Cartwright said Mathis impeded her ability to do her job as Electoral Commissioner.

“I’m trying to fight for those students who want to make sure Student Government is run by the students,” Cartwright said. “We don’t go into staff offices and take over their duties or influence how they run things, so we don’t feel that it should be done to us.”

The Electoral Commission is not the only group of students unimpressed with how the elections were run.

The FAMU Chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People let their voice be heard in a different way. They had pairs of students walk memos to the electoral commissioner with their concerns.

“I think it went pretty well even though we couldn’t do it the way we wanted to,” said Adrienne Rogers, NAACP president.

“We want to make sure that the security of the ballots is not compromised, and if they are, we want whoever is responsible to face disciplinary action.”

Ramon J. Alexander, the newly elected SGA president, said he is not focused on the appeals process.

“We are looking forward,” Alexander said. “We have already begun planning for the upcoming school year.”

Alexander said that he was excited about advertising open positions in the executive branch to students.

Torey Alston, who was a candidate for the 2005-2006 SGA presidency, could not be reached for comment.

Contact Kyle Hopewell at