Former mayor’s appointment delayed in part because of student complaint against him

We got some more updates for you all about former Middletown mayor Sebastian Giuliano and his appointment to the CT State Elections Enforcement Commission:

As of Wednesday, January 13th, the SEEC announced that it is postponing the vote that would have otherwise allowed for Mr. Giuliano’s appointment as its Executive Director and General Counsel until further notice.

This postponement is in no small part due to the rushed efforts of a handful of Wesleyan students to file a complaint against Mr. Giuliano with the SEEC. Despite most students being on break and scattered across the country, a surprise blizzard, and only 4 days to get everything together, the complaint was delivered around 1:30 PM on Tuesday by Paulina Jones-Torregrosa ’15 on behalf of the group of students. At 3:30 PM that same day, Mansoor Alam ’15 stood outside the SEEC to take questions from various journalists.

The complaint stated that there was a “pattern of attempts to intimidate, mislead or otherwise discourage a specific segment of his constituents [a.k.a. Wesleyan students] from voting” taken by Mr. Giuliano and some of his affiliates. It focused specifically on a campaign event during which Mr. Giuliano came to Usdan a few days before the election. According to the complaint, Mr. Giuliano incorrectly claimed that the Registrar of Voters wasn’t rectifying any faulty registrations, and that if students didn’t confirm their residential address with the Registrar of Voters, they could “come up empty” on Election Day. The complaint argues that this (among other actions) illegally confused students on their eligibility to vote in the November 2011 elections.

As Ben Florsheim ’14 stated, “The mission of Elections Enforcement is to ‘ensure the integrity of the state’s electoral process.’ But given the evidence that the former mayor has undermined that very process during his recent campaign, this would be a case of the fox guarding the hen house.”

“Since the Executive Director position is a life-time appointment, we felt that it was very important to bring this up with the SEEC before Giuliano got the job,” said Gabriela De Golia ’13. “We hope that this will be for the benefit of Wesleyan and other Connecticut college students.”

It’s unclear whether or not the outcome of the vote will change from what everyone initially expected, but the fact that Wesleyan students delayed a political appointment is in itself reason for applause.

5 thoughts on “Former mayor’s appointment delayed in part because of student complaint against him

  1. Pingback: Former Middletown mayor not to head state’s elections watchdog agency anymore – Wesleying

    1. a student

      with all due respect, and speaking as the daughter of a former leader in california’s disability rights movement: of course the rights of special ed children are extremely important, and numerous wesleyan students support them. but voter suppression / intimidation and voter rights are also very real issue across the country. so please, don’t insult individuals who work on other valuable causes in hopes of gaining support for those you are more invested in — it aggravates more than appeals to people, and could damage your efforts. that being said, and in all honesty: good luck with your cause.

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