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Junior leaves Senate after election to senior seat

Junior leaves Senate after election to senior seat

McCade Tomczak will no longer serve on the Student Senate after this discrepancy was pointed out

Junior McCade Tomczak served two General Assembly sessions as a senior class senator following a “miscommunication” with Vice President Yohan Chauhan about which class Student Senate seats were open.

According to Chauhan who oversees Senate elections, Tomczak submitted his ballot statement to run in the emergency election for the open senior class chair 30 minutes before the opportunity to submit statements closed. Although Tomczak contacted Chauhan directly to request the Google Form, Chauhan says he did not clarify which class the seat was for and he does not think Tomczak saw which year the form specified.

Since Tomczak was the only applicant for the seat, he was automatically elected to the Senate. It was brought to President Bamise Afolabi’s attention last Thursday that Tomczak is actually a junior. On Friday, TKS received an anonymous tip alleging that election fraud had occurred to allow Tomczak to assume the senior senator position.

When initially asked for comment on the situation, Afolabi said there was no fraud and that Tomczak had clicked the wrong button for his class, even though the only seats open were for the class of 2024 and the class of 2021. 

“We looked into this by inquiring from him how this had happened, and he told us that he must have clicked the button for the wrong class when he was filling out the form for his ballot statement,” Afolabi said in an email.

In an interview, Afolabi said that the discrepancy had been a miscommunication. Tomczak had thought he ran for the Class of 2022.

“It was just a miscommunication that happened in the process,” Afolabi said. “So, the election was for the Class of 2021, but McCade thought the election was for the Class of 2022.”

Both the email announcing the emergency elections and the email announcing the winners of the elections said they were for the Classes of 2021 and 2024 and that Tomczak had won the election for the Class of 2021.

Chauhan said that the discrepancy had been a misunderstanding between himself and Tomczak. He maintained in an interview that although he knows Tomczak because they are fraternity brothers, Chauhan did not know Tomczak’s class year and did not ask him about it. 

Chauhan says he did not check the directory to see what Tomczak’s class was until the discrepancy was pointed out. Afolabi, on the other hand, said in an interview that Chauhan had not checked the directory at all, then corrected himself in an email saying, “We do actually check students’ class status with Knox directory.”

Tomczak will no longer serve on the Student Senate since there are no open seats for the Class of 2022.

Tomczak did not respond to requests for comments on his side of the story from TKS. 

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