The beginning of the semester looked bright for the freshly forming Young Americans for Liberty at Harper College. We had members of our club as voting members on student senate and we thought we really could accomplish things on campus;.
But due to the rules at Harper that allow the Student Senate President and her executive board to appoint voting members and not have elections for these student representatives, she was able to strip one of our members of their voting rights and restrict other members of our club from obtaining voting rights. At first we were discouraged but then became outraged. Then we decided as a club that we needed to change things on campus to allow students to elect their representatives in the Senate.
So for 5 weeks we planned, lobbied the student senators, and brushed up on Roberts Rules of order. Then, on Friday Oct 19, we carried out our plan during the Student Senate meeting. We made sure to bring one of our club members who happens to be a writer for the school newspaper along as well. We immediately put our plan to suspend the rules in place, which led to all out trench fight between the senators and the executive board.
The executive board was trying to appoint new voting members that day, which according to the Constitution was not allowed because appointments can only happen before the fifth week of school. The senators, on the other hand, were trying to make the representatives (non-voting members) become senators and be given the right to vote. These representatives happened to be members of YAL and were not allowed beforehand to vote because of our views. The floor fight lasted for over an hour, and ended with a recess.
The recess took place because the senators demanded that the executive board review everything and come back with a decision to allow our previous representative to become senators. After the fifteen minute recess the executive board came back and granted all of YAL’s members on Student Senate their voting rights and even gave voting rights back to the Senator who was stripped of his rights at the beginning of the year. When these senators were appointed it became clear to us that Young Americans for Liberty now has the majority vote in our Senate!
Keeping with the great libertarian conspiracy that we want to take over, so we can leave you alone, our first plan of action will be to petition the students to implement open voting for Student Senators, and with our majority vote on the Senate we will ensure that it gets passed. I want to thank our members Kristie Constabileo, Sahand Tsay, and Devarshi Patel for playing such a pivotal part in making this success happen!