Michael Hernández and Guilmar Valle named USG president and vice president, election includes multiple campaign complaints

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After a University of Connecticut Undergraduate Student Government special election, Michael Hernández and Guilmar Valle have been named the next USG president and vice president.  

Hernández and Valle earned a total of 340 votes, while opponents Jase Valle and Guymara Manigat earned 290 votes.  

After a 24-hour period after voting when campaign complaints can be filed, two were brought to the USG Judiciary.  

Jase Valle submitted a complaint on behalf of his campaign, alleging posts made by the Hernández/Valle campaign on Instagram were violating Bylaw XIV, Section 8: Campaign Conduct and Etiquette.  

“The complaint was in regard to a number of Instagram stories posted on the Hernández/Valle campaign page, as well as one story reposted on Guilmar Valle’s personal page. The stories consisted of references to Jase Valle’s interview with The Daily Campus and contained political rhetoric criticizing the Valle/Manigat campaign,” according to the complaint ruling.  

The Judiciary found that, while it does not condone this behavior, it does not violate the standards of Bylaw XIV, Section 8, Subsection a: “A candidate’s personal conduct shall preserve the spirit and integrity of the Undergraduate Student Government,” or constitute libel under Bylaw XIV, Section 8, Subsection c: “Campaigns must not slander, libel, or falsely represent any other candidates or parties.”  

“The behavior refers to an accurate transcript of the aforementioned interview,” the ruling said, referring to the interview conducted by The Daily Campus.  

After the interview was published, posts circulated on social media included Jase Valle’s response to being asked about sexual assault allegations in the fraternity he previously was the president of.  

“Just because the issue happened — it’s sad, and it makes me sick to my stomach — but in some ways we have to look over that for me,” Valle said in the interview referenced with The Daily Campus.  

The USG Judiciary found that because the posts included “verifiable remarks by Jase Valle,” this did not constitute a violation of election policies, and is not subject for appeal.  

Another complaint was brought to the Judiciary Thursday night by Jessica Delgado, current USG speaker of the senate.  

“The complaint was regarding Instagram story posts uploaded during the course of the election…These posts were of a critical nature, consisting of several insults between Speaker Delgado and the student in question.”

USG Judiciary Ruling

Delgado’s complaint alleged a student on behalf of the Valle/Manigat campaign violated Bylaw XIV, Section 8: Campaign Conduct and Etiquette, and that the Valle/Manigat campaign was responsible for the student’s actions under Bylaw XIV, Section 8, Subsection f: “Candidates are responsible for maintaining an updated campaign roster with all members of their campaign with the Elections Oversight Commissioner. A candidate shall be held responsible for all campaign actions taken on their behalf.”  

“The complaint was regarding Instagram story posts uploaded during the course of the election,” the ruling said. “These posts were of a critical nature, consisting of several insults between Speaker Delgado and the student in question.” 

The Judiciary found the rhetoric in the posts to be “inappropriate and unprofessional,” and found that it likely is a violation of Bylaw XIV, Section 8. 

“However, in the absence of campaign rosters for each presidential campaign, it cannot be determined if the student in question was part of the Valle/Manigat campaign,” according to the reading. “As a result, the Valle/Manigat campaign is not considered in violation of Bylaw XIV, Section 8, Subsection f.”  

The USG special election was held this semester after Joshua Crow and Alex Ose won the presidency and vice presidency last spring, but both resigned in July. 

This was Jase Valle and Manigat’s second run for the presidency and vice presidency, after they ran against Crow and Ose last spring.  

Also on this election’s ballot was the new Chief Diversity Officer position, as well as various senator seats for different residential halls, schools and commuter students.  

“I’d also like to congratulate Damani R. Douglas, who ran a successful write-in campaign to become our first Chief Diversity Officer, and our newest class of 31 Senators,” Caleb Moore, USG chief justice wrote in an email to USG members. “I look forward to working with all of you.” 

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