Supreme Court should not keep election decisions out of the public eye

As you have read in this newspaper (page 3), the 2008 Student Government elections have reached a new level of length and controversy. Wednesday’s results were held up due to election code violations, which meant both candidates faced the SG Supreme Court.

The decisions made by the Supreme Court will have a profound and lasting impact on the school. Their decision could have decided who will be the next president, if they have disqualified a candidate. Good thing the session was open to see how the court functions in such a critical scenario.

Or so you would think. Reporters from The Miami Hurricane and UMTV were turned away from the doors of the meeting Wednesday night, with one court justice citing “precedent” and saying there was no other reason.

In such unprecedented times, how could the court bar access? The reviews should be conducted publicly, and while the masses certainly can’t fit into UC 211, the university’s watchdog should be able to see a very significant part of this year’s SG elections.

For example, look to the state in which we reside. Florida is the Sunshine State in more than one sense. Sunshine laws, which explicitly guarantee public access to information, ensure that important business takes place in the public eye, from Supreme Court deliberations to condominium board meetings.

While the University of Miami is a private institution, that doesn’t mean it can’t take good ideas from the government. Let’s bring such important actions – like picking a Student Government president – out into the light.

March 6, 2008


The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami

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The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published in print every Tuesday.