Jok campaign accuses Eric Brock of campaign violations
Ethical questions, election violations raised in Judicial Board inquiry
This story has been updated with a decision made by the Judicial
Board after a hearing conducted on April 14.
Eric Brock, a candidate for Student Government President, is facing accusations of election violations from fellow candidate Nikola Jok, according to an email sent to The Eagle on Tuesday.
Jok, also a SG President candidate, is accusing Brock of ethical violations to SG campaigning policies. The allegations came after Brock tweeted about his campaign’s stance on Title IX. In the tweet, he claimed Jok’s fraternity, Sigma Phi Epsilon, has “ ... a history of getting Title IX complaints and covering up for their members during AU investigations.”
According to Brian Fu, the inspector of Student Government, complaints raised by Jok of harassment and libel did not have standing. Fu said that complaints that had standing include a governing document violation, a policy book violation and an ethical violation. Fu filed one violation in each of those categories in an inquiry with the Judicial Board.
The violations Brock was faced with include engaging in jokes or inappropriate remarks about sexual violence or rape, violating rules about campaign materials being in good taste, and adhering to laws and regulations which prohibit the discussion of pending conduct cases, including those which fall under the purview of Title IX, according to the Notification of Inquiry that was written by Judicial Board Chair Sean-Matthew Flores.
“I did find a legitimate argument for the campaign materials being in poor taste,” Fu told The Eagle. The SG Elections Policy Book outlines that all campaign materials must be in “good taste.”
While Jok is not mentioned by name in the tweet, he is the only candidate running for president that is a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon, and the content of the tweet was also mentioned by Brock during debates that were held by both AU Dems and ATV.
Potential sanctions against Brock by the Judicial Board could include the removal of the tweet, restriction of campaign finance allowances, suspension of the campaign or disqualification of the candidate.
Confidential matters prevented Jok and Brock from commenting.
Some of the complaints submitted by Jok that Fu said do not have standing included those of harassment and violating the spirit of the elections. Jok accused Brock of libel as well, which Fu also did not find standing for.
The Judicial Board conducted a hearing on April 14 and found Brock in violation of two of the three charges against him. Those charges communicated misleading information regarding a specific fraternity and incident and failed to adhere to the standard requiring all campaign material to be “in good taste.” Brock must remove his tweet, as well as any other identical social media postings that were identical to it, as ordered by the Judicial Board.
Sean-Matthew Flores, chairman of the Judicial Board, has ordered the case and details surrounding it to be confidential. The interview in this story with Brian Fu was conducted before this decision was made.