Gay student wins election at Texas A&M, prominent alumnus publicly reacts negatively

Yes but instead people want to make it about rick perry being anti-gay. Just look at the title.

Protected class status rears its ugly head again.

I had a moment of fascination with this, and took a look at some of the actual decisions, by the student Commissioner of Elections and by the student Judicial Court (or whatever they call it – it has a Chief Justice a Vice-Chief Justice, and a bunch of Associate Justices). The written record leaves little doubt that (a) all of these kids – the candidates, their “staffs,” the commissioner and justices – take themselves extremely seriously, (b) their level of anality is off the charts, © they all desperately want to go to law school, and (d) this is anything but a bunch of liberals seizing on a foot-fault to overturn the will of the people.

The election commissioner disqualified the plurality winner on two grounds, one relating to voter intimidation, the other to failing to report the donation of props (the glow-sticks) used in a slick campaign video. The student court heard arguments and took briefs on the two disqualifications separately. On the voter intimidation issue, which they heard and decided first, they overturned the disqualification 5-2, with vigorous opinions each way. On the reporting issue, they were unanimous that there had been a violation and disqualification was required. Everyone, including the elections commissioner, acknowledged that the violation looked trivial, but insisted the law they were interpreting left them no other choice. The disqualified candidate seems to have admitted there was a violation, and to have argued that lots of other people had gotten away with that in the past.

Here are the student justices:

There’s a seventh justice, the only woman, who is a classics major; nothing I read explained why she did not participate in the critical decision. She had voted with the majority to overturn the disqualification on the voter intimidation ground.

Wow. Campaign videos, judicial review, interference by federal officials, crazy stuff.

@JHS, Thanks for perusing the actual text. If the courts followed that standard we’d all be in jail. I hope none of those kids go to law school.

[sarcasm]I thought taking oneself too seriously and being exceedingly anal were mandated prerequisites for those aspiring to be lawyers…especially prosecutors/judges. [/sarcasm] ducks

To be fair, if the following was what actually transpired from the defense:

then I don’t blame the judges for citing him for that violation.

IME, the “but lots of other people have gotten away with it in the past” defense rarely works with judges…or sensible/hardnosed bosses, supervisors, and parents. It’s an excuse/defense a toddler or young elementary school kid would use as an attempt to avoid responsibility for his/her misconduct/mistake with serious consequences.

It not only concedes one’s guilt, it also exhibits a high degree of entitlement which effectively places the defendant in a worse light, especially in a legal/quasi-legal proceedings like this.

It is impossible to run an election campaign without violating a rule. If you look hard enough you could then disqualify anyone. A violation would usually have to have a material effect on the result before a ban could be justified.

Go a step further - has any presidential candidate ever accounted precisely for every glow stick?

Looks like the Texas A&M election rules are written to have zero tolerance for campaign finance reporting violations, unlike for other violations which may result in penalties that are not disqualification. See article VII section III(a) of (linked from ; other violations may have lesser penalties as described in article VI).

Quite a categorical dicto simpliciter to dump in the thread without any support…

The only person from Texas A&M I ever knew was a classmate and section-mate of mine at Harvard Law School. He always wore cowboy boots, and enjoyed spitting tobacco juice into a large empty Coke bottle that he kept in his dorm room. He tended to refer to women by using an obscene term for a particular female body part. I used to wonder if that was what he was really like, or if it was just an act to shock Northeasterners. It did make quite an impression on me, though. Even though he turned out to be a pretty nice guy. (The one time I saw him after we graduated was on a trip I made to Houston on a case when I was a junior associate. I arranged to meet him for a drink, and the place he picked turned out to be a strip joint. Kind of embarrassing, even in my prior incarnation.)

in re those middle 20’s posts:
There are some that believe the letter of the law is to be upheld as written, and if there’s a complaint it is the job of the lawmaker to re-write. They believe the judge should only rule based on what is written.
Others believe the law can be disregarded if the outcome of the law just doesn’t make one feel good, as it seems an unfair outcome. Both philosophies extend to adults that are well beyond the college years. These people believe that if laws(rules) in a modern society seem unfair, then a judge has the right, even obligation, to rule based on how he/she thinks the rule should be.

@DonnaL wow. I went to Texas A&M and that guy sounds like a jerk. But I guess there are ridiculous people everywhere. A&M is a school where they value doing the right thing in general. The motto is “Aggies never lie cheat or steal or tolerate those that do.” I’m not sure how having glow sticks means they tell the other guy he won. I was an officer in the Pre-Law society back when we did not have our own law school and some of them were a little over the top.

Yes, agree that there are ridiculous people everywhere. How about this bus rolling through major cities? It was vandalized when it hit NYC.

You mean the transphobic hate bus? Are you surprised? Would you be surprised if the same thing happened to a bus with racist messages in NYC or Philadelphia? What do you think would happen to a bus with deliberately provocative anti-Christian messages rolling through the so-called Bible Belt?

I am surprised it was only vandalized in NYC.

I would have thought that Rick Perry would be one of those people.

There are two distinct, separate issues. One is the decision made by the folks at Texas A&M. THAT could fill an entirely different thread for pages and pages. The second issue is the one raised by the original poster - the involvement of the current Secretary of Energy, Rick Perry. Keep in mind that Rick Perry has LOTS to focus on, in his current job, given that when he accepted this appointment, he acknowledged that he had NO CLUE what the Department of Energy actually does. Instead of focusing on his job, he decided to involve himself in an election at a state university. His action is not just inappropriate, it is pitiful.

HarvestMoon1, the last I heard it was heading down to Philadelphia. So I don’t think we’ve seen the last of this kind of story.

What I wonder about is the bus driver. Does he or she volunteer for such a job? Or are they told “Here is your bus and your route. Go!”