Impeachment effort draws concern

By Maureen Morrissey

An effort by some Student Association senators to impeach SA President Huda Scheidelman has sparked concerns among senators and others involved with the SA.

An impeachment petition signed by seven SA senators was given to Scheidelman Feb. 2. Since the petition was submitted, Senators Steven Zarch and Gavin Kemp have withdrawn their signatures.

Newly-elected senator Henry Treftz said he is “not sure whether or not he supports impeachment.” However, “the petiton does have some legitimate complaints” about Scheidelman’s performance in office, he said.

“It is better if we (the senators) go to the meeting on Sunday, listen to the facts and make an informed decision,” Treftz said.

Impeachment proceedings will take place at Sunday’s 6 p.m. SA meeting in the Holmes Student Center’s Heritage Room.

A two-thirds senate vote is needed to remove Scheidelman from office. NIU Student Regent Bob Tisch said, “If they can get 30 votes (in support of the impeachment), I’ll be suprised.”

Sen. James Mertes, who signed the petition, said if “45 open minds listen to both sides of the argument at the meeting, I think the impeachment will go through.”

New Sen. John Hughes said he had doubts about the impeachment. “I do not think it will benefit anyone to have her impeached. I think her performance has been satisfactory,” he said.

Petitioners pointed out the executive board’s decision to allow the Black Student Union to charge admission to Louis Farrakhan’s NIU lecture was rejected by the SA Supreme Court.

The court based their decision on SA bylaws, which state that the executive board is not allowed to approve admission fees to SA-funded events without senate approval.

Petitioners are using this unconstitutional act as partial grounds for impeachment.

Michelle Emmett, NIU director of University Progarmming and Activities, said, “I find the argument to impeach Huda odd because the executive board decisions about Farrakhan involved all three executive board members.

“The whole (impeachment) thing is an unfortunate waste of energy on something that is counterproductive,” Emmett said, adding it might damage the SA’s credibility.

But Mertes said “removal (of Scheidelman) can only increase the credibility of the SA.”

den. Jordan Kagan said “impeachment will only divide the senate and lessen the reputation of the SA more. At this time I do not see why impeachment is neccesary.”