UMich cancels student gov vote, citing election interference by pro-Palestinian students
Officials at the University of Michigan have canceled votes on two student government referenda regarding this Israel-Hamas conflict, citing 'unprecedented' election interference by pro-Palestinian students.
Officials at the University of Michigan have canceled votes on two student government referenda regarding the Israel-Hamas conflict, citing “unprecedented” election interference by pro-Palestinian students.
A resolution titled AR 13-025, urged the university to state that the people of Gaza are “undergoing genocide” and “acknowledge that 75+ years of Palestinian-Israeli tensions have been created through systems of settler colonialism,” reports Inside Higher Ed.
In a Dec. 1 email to all students, university vice president and general counsel Timothy Lynch announced that the votes were cancelled due to “unprecedented interference” in the election process by the pro-Palestinian students.
“This action became necessary after learning that an unauthorized email was sent to the entire undergraduate student body on the Ann Arbor campus at the request of a graduate student,” said Lynch. “The email was an inappropriate use of the university’s email system in violation of Standard Practice Guide 601.07. The email irreparably tainted the voting process on the two resolutions.”
The “unauthorized” mass email referenced by Lynch encouraged students to vote in favor of AR 13-025 and against the pro-Israel AR 13-026. The pro-Israel resolution asked the university to “keep all students safe in their homes, in their classes, and on the broader campus” and provide mental health resources for students impacted by the violence in the Middle East.
The university’s Responsible Use of Information Resources policy, bars the use of university resources, like email lists, “to campaign for or against a ballot initiative or candidate running for office or to conduct a political campaign.”