Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

State reps respond to accusations

On Monday, Nov. 24, The Crimson White ran an article titled “Clash of Conservatives.” In the article, various members of the University of Alabama College Republicans were mentioned as having a part in recent elections within the organization that some members felt were 

In Monday’s article, ousted chair of UACR, Maverick Flowers, said Dalton Dismukes, central vice chairman of the College Republican Federation of Alabama, scheduled elections without the knowledge of UACR’s executive board, something he said is in contradiction with the organization’s constitution.

Dismukes, however, said the elections held were valid according to the version of the organization’s constitution that is on file at The SOURCE, the governing body 
for student organizations at the University.

According to the UACR’s constitution, all elections must be called by the executive board two weeks prior to the date that the elections are to be held.

Cole Lawson, state chairman of the CRFA, said the constitution that the CRFA and the constitution that is on file at The SOURCE are identical, therefore making the elections valid according to the statewide organization.

“The CRFA, as well as the national federation, keeps a copy of all the chapters’ bylaws on file at all times,” he said. “The copy we have is the same copy that was on file at The SOURCE.”

Lawson said the state board officially recognized Cleveland as chairman of UACR at a meeting Thursday night, at which time the state board also confirmed that the elections were valid.

“They brought up the motion and it was unanimously passed with the entire state executive board, to recognize that election as legitimate and done by the rules in accordance with what the University told us,” he said.

Flowers said no one in the organization was notified that elections were scheduled to take place, making the elections invalid.

Dismukes said that he, Lawson and the organization’s faculty adviser Jamey Clements all attempted to notify Flowers via email that elections were to take place.

“Jamey sent him an email, I think Cole sent him an email, I sent him an email,” he said. “We were trying to say, ‘Hey Maverick, please let your folks know there’s going to be an election.’”

Dismukes said Robert Crocker, state treasurer and a member of UACR, motioned to set an election date at the UACR meeting on Nov. 3, a motion that was unanimously agreed upon by all present members of the organization.

“If it is seconded, then the chairman really doesn’t have the authority to just say, ‘No,’” Dismukes said. “I seconded Robert’s motion. Maverick would not hear it. That in itself is against the constitution and Robert’s Rules.”

Robert’s Rules, Dismukes said, is a document that governs many clubs and organizations, including UACR.

Dismukes said the motion to set an election date was brought to the floor several times that night, and each time it was shot down by Flowers.

He said eventually, several members of the executive board, including Flowers, walked out of the meeting.

Dismukes said according to Robert’s Rules, when the chairman of the organization is not present, the next ranking members is to preside over meetings. Under this authority, he said, elections were scheduled for Nov. 18 by Clements and himself.

On Friday afternoon, Flowers said he and various other members of the ousted UACR administration met with Associate Dean Dorr of the College of Arts and Sciences in order to file a harassment complaint against Dismukes and Clements in regard to this situation.

Dismukes said he is unaware of the origin of this complaint, and that he attempted to contact Dean Dorr’s office, and was told that no such file exists.

“I didn’t know about any harassment charges until this morning at 8:00 when one of my employers called me saying, ‘Are you being charged with harassment?’” he said.

He said he is troubled by these allegations.

“Maverick made a statement that could’ve gotten me fired. That’s pretty bad. That’s defamation of character,” he said. “My name being defamed is very troubling.”

Clements said the University has not contacted him regarding a harassment complaint, and that anything he could say about the allegations before hearing from the University would only serve to fuel existing rumors.

Dismukes said the way Flowers and other members of the previous executive board have handled this situation is upsetting and reflects badly on the Republican Party as a whole.

“We’re a big-tent party. We want everyone in here, but we don’t want you to get so upset when you don’t get your way that you destroy the creed of the Republicans,” he said. “No one’s going to want to come to the College Republicans after this. This is embarrassing.”

Flowers and other members of the organization said it was a difference in ideology that spurred this change in leadership.

Dismukes, however, said this was not the case.

“We do have personal differences. However, that is not the cause,” he said. “The cause was the club was falling apart.”

Dismukes said he hopes Flowers and the other members of UACR’s previous executive board will still attend UACR events and meetings, despite the recent misunderstanding.

“We want them to come. We want them to be a part of this. We want to move forward,” he said.

Newly-elected chairman of UACR, Michael Cleveland, said he hopes the organization can work together to move on from this situation and begin to take steps to increase membership and participation.

“I just want to see this organization move forward and going back and relapsing in the past is just not helping things at all,” he said.

Cleveland said this situation has been taken out of context, and that his intentions are honest.

“I don’t want people to view me as some corrupt 21-year-old politician,” he said. “That is not what I am here to do.”

Despite this, Cleveland said he admits that the situation could have been handled in a different way.

“I think both sides could have handled this a lot differently, and I am in part to blame for that, and I do apologize and I think that should come from both sides,” he said. “I would love to see this organization move forward with both sides working together to make this the best College Republicans in the state.”

UACR held a meeting Monday night, which was attended by Secretary of State John Merrill, who spoke to the group.

Also at Monday night’s meeting, Clements was confirmed as faculty adviser to the organization. The motion was put to a vote, and among the 31 individuals present, only one voted, ‘No.’”

Flowers was not in attendance.

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