The Michigan Daily -Tuesday, March 15, 2005- 3
The 2005 Forum on Music and
Entertainment Law will feature guest-
speakers Andrew W.K. Jay Cooper
and Seamus Blackley, who will speak
about laws affecting music and enter-
The forum will be followed by
a reception and will feature music
throughout the day.
The forum will be held today
from noon to 6 p.m. in room 100 of
in local areas
The Symposium on Community-
Based Work will be held today to rec-
ognize ways local communities and
the University work together to enact
social change. Founder of the Arab
Community Center for Economic and
Social Services, Ismael Ahmed, will
.give the keynote speech.
The event will be held today for
free in the Michigan League from 9
a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Former neo-Nazi to
speak at Holocaust
The University's Conference on
the Holocaust will present Tom Mar-
tinez, once a member of the racist
society The Order.
Martinez, a former undercover
agent with the FBI and a member
of the Witness Protection Program,
now tours the country discussing
his autobiography "Brotherhood of
Murder" and warning of neo-Nazi
Martinez will speak about his
experiences and take questions from
the audience tonight from 7 to 9 p.m.
victim, finds way
The University Hospital treated a
patient who sustained injuries from
a physical assault in Novi Sunday
night, the Department of Public
No report was filed with DPS, but
the appropriate local police agency
A staffer at the University Hos-
pital reported that someone glared
at her, and she felt threatened early
yesterday morning, according to
In Daily History
March 15, 1984 - Gay activists
said yesterday they are disturbed by
University President Harold Shapiro's
comments this week after he guaran-
teeing that the University would not
discriminate on the basis of sexual
Although the policy statement
was a step forward for the gay rights
movement on campus, Shapiro's
comment that he had not seen any
solid "evidence" of gays facing dis-
crimination on campus soured the
victory, said lesbian LSA Senior
With that comment Shapiro "totally
discounted us," Godre told a 25-mem-
ber audience yesterday at Campus
Meet the Press.
Gay men and lesbians on campus
are discriminated against in subtle
MSA election board questioned over bias
Letter written to the Daily
accuses board members of
having conflicts of interest with
By Jeremy Davidson
Daily Staff Reporter
Allegations of bias were brought against the
Michigan Student Assembly's election board in an
e-mail addressed to editors of The Michigan Daily
Written by Maize Rage for MSA campaign
director Carl Pogoncheff, the e-mail voiced con-
cerns about the makeup of the election board, the
rules and elections chair and the election director.
Pogoncheff specifically pointed to the friend-
ships between members of the election board, the
rules and elections chair, the election director and
MSA presidential candidate Jesse Levine, who is
the head of the Students 4 Michigan ticket.
Members of the election board include Elaine
Gaston, a member of Students 4 Michigan, and
Sashai Alvarez, a former member of Students
First, a party that retired its name last semester
and whose former members largely formed Stu-
dents 4 Michigan.
Pogoncheff said he fears that these connections
could be exploited by Students 4 Michigan if there
is a dispute in the election, because the board has
jurisdiction over all election complaints.
But MSA Rules and Elections Chair Russell
Garber said the assembly would have a tough
time appointing a board that did not have a
connection to Levine through one of these two
parties. Because Students 4 Michigan is the
dominant student party on MSA, to create a
board with no connections to Levine would be
impossible, Garber said.
"Four-fifths of the assembly are either mem-
bers of Students 4 Michigan or former members
of Students First," Garber said. "Only two-fifths of
the election board are composed of members from
However, Pogoncheff said the fact that four-
fifths of MSA has ties to Levine through one of
these two parties is one of his primary concerns.
"We want to be a voice for the silent majority
on campus," Pogoncheff said, adding that he feels
Students 4 Michigan is a "self-serving" party.
The election board hears disputes that members
of MSA may have during the election process.
In the past, Students 4 Michigan and its prede-
cessor Students First have violated election rules
related to housing. Pogoncheff said he believes the
election board and election director acted inappro-
priately in that case.
MSA election director Brian Doughty disputed
Maize Rage's allegations.
"I don't think they have brought forth very con-
crete allegations. There are many checks in place
to ensure the impartiality of the election director
and the election board," Doughty said.
One of the election board members that Pogon-
cheff said is most biased is current MSA President
Mironov appointed Levine as MSA gen-
eral counsel and has campaigned with
Levine numerous times, Pogoncheff said.
"It would be like Bill Clinton sitting on an election
board for Al Gore," Pogoncheff said.
Levine defended Mironov's appointment to the
"I think Jason has been known to operate with
integrity," Levine said.
Pogoncheff said the election board, which is
composed of members of MSA, acted with bias
during the last election when issuing a punishment
for Tim Wiggins, a Students 4 Michigan candidate
who was kicked out of campaigning in the dorms
by University Housing last semester.
Doughty was election director when this issue
came up last semester, and as such was responsible
for overseeing the election board.
The election board's punishment for Wiggins
was that he would deliver a speech to the assembly
at a meeting for this semester's candidates, talk-
ing to them about the importance of following the
rules of RHA.
"Fellow members of his party literally laughed
at this punishment," Pogoncheff said.
This year's election board members were elect-
ed, first by notifying Garber ahead of time of their
interest in a candidacy. From the list of eight stu-
dents who announced their candidacies, Garber
and the executive board of MSA presented nomi-
nations to the general assembly.
The MSA general assembly approved both the
election board and the election director.
Pogoncheff's e-mail also pointed out that Gar-
ber and Levine are members of the same fraternity,
Alpha Epsilon Pi.
Garber said he counts Levine as a friend, but
that it would be absurd to think that he would let
friendship cloud his judgment while nominating
members to the elections board.
"Part of making things work in MSA is about
building friendships within MSA. There are a
number of people I would count as friends within
MSA," Garber said.
Students 4 Michigan claimed 12 seats in the
MSA elections held last December. Ten indepen-
dent candidates and three candidates from the
Defend Affirmative Action Party were also elected
Maize Rage has six candidates running in the
upcoming elections, including one for president
and one for vice president.
Federal lawsuit postpones
partial-birth ban until April
. ACLU, Center for Reproductive
Rights, Planned Parenthood sue
state, call ban unconstitutional
LANSING (AP) - A new state law that bans a pro-
cedure critics call partial-birth abortion will not take
effect this month so that the state has more time to
respond to a federal lawsuit challenging the statute.
Under an agreement reached by Attorney General
Mike Cox and three groups that filed suit, the abortion
law was put on hold until June 15. It was scheduled to
take effect March 30. , .
U.S. District Judge Denise Page Hood approved the
temporary restraining order yesterday.
Cox spokeswoman Allison Pierce said the state need-
ed more time to respond to the suit, which was filed
"Attorney General Cox is doing everything he can to
prepare adequately to defend the voice of the people of
Michigan," Pierce said. "We had a week to respond. We
can't adequately prepare a response in that amount of
The American Civil Liberties Union, the Center for
Reproductive Rights and Planned Parenthood Fed-
eration of American argue the law is unconstitutional
because it could be interpreted as a ban on all abortions
and does not allow exceptions for when a mother's life
or health are in danger.
"We are relieved this extreme measure will not go
into effect as scheduled," said the Rev. Mark Pawloski,
chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of South
The law was approved by the state Legislature last
June. Hundreds of thousands of voters signed petitions
to allow the bill to become law with only the approval of
the House and Senate, both controlled by Republicans,
after Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm vetoed the
This is the state's third attempt at stopping the abor-
tion procedure referred to by medical organizations as
"intact dilatation and extraction," or D&X. Previous
state laws were struck down by federal courts in 1997
The law being challenged is different from the previ-
ous attempts because it does not ban a specific proce-
It defines the moment a person is legally born as when
any part of a fetus is expelled from a woman's body.
Ed Rivet, legislative director for Right to Life of
Michigan, which supports the law, said the delay was'
expected because the state needs time to prepare its
The lawsuit was filed by the three groups on behalf of
Northland Family Planning Clinic Inc., Summit Medi-
cal Center, Planned Parenthood Mid-Michigan Alli-
ance, Planned Parenthood of South Central Michigan
and a group of individual physicians.
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