Student Senate does not commit to reforming itself

The impeachment process of Carnegie Mellon’s Student Body President, Jake Flittner, was a failure on several levels.

The Undergraduate Student Senate unanimously called for Flittner’s impeachment on March 1. Senate Chair Will Weiner and Graduate Student Assembly (GSA) president Jason Imbrogno proceeded to schedule the hearing March 22, on the last possible day to impeach Flittner. GSA then failed to reach quorum, without the 53 members required to vote — 46 of the 70 members showed — and the impeachment hearing was null.

This hearing was meant to be the turning point, at which Carnegie Mellon’s student government would get its act together and start following its own rules. Its purpose was to show that members of Senate and GSA would not stand for those who shirk their constitutional duties and would set a precedent for the future.

While failing to achieve quorum for an impeachment hearing of a student government known for his absenteeism is embarrassing, it is not the reason why the motion failed. The sentiments of the impeachment hearing did not match those of the movement to impeach, where Student Senate unanimously voted to proceed with the impeachment hearing against Flittner.

Instead of recognizing that Flittner had blatantly left his duties unfulfilled, excuses were made that portrayed the Student Body Constitution as a mere guideline.

Student Senate did not hold Flittner to his constitutional standards.

The situation shows how Student Senate has been unable to follow through on initiatives that would benefit the student body.

Impeaching Flittner would have been a significant step toward reaching that goal, simply because student government would have followed through with an attempt to reform itself.

Hopefully in the future, Senate will take the necessary measures to put student interest first by following through with initiatives to remedy problems, especially those within Senate.