Senators speak up, elect new Speaker

Following a sudden resignation, the SGA’s Speaker of the Senate seat has been filled by Senator Julia Michel.The senators voted unanimously to make Michel the next Speaker of the Senate, after Senator Ana Dru Ellis resigned due to family issues just before spring break. “There’s a lot going on for me right now, and I can’t be as focused and as attentive and offer all I can to this body,” Ellis said. “And that’s not what’s best for our student body either.” Because the resignation was not planned and came mid-semester, there was some confusion over proper procedure.  According to the SGA constitution, in the event that the speaker resigns, the vice president fulfills the duties of the speaker. However, some senators said they weren’t comfortable with Vice President Kate Ash filling the role of speaker. “It wouldn’t be right for Vice President Ash to split herself between two positions,” Senator Brandon John-Freso said.Other senators said that they agreed.”Now that we don’t have a speaker, it is our duty to elect a new one,” Senator Mike Glynne said. After deliberation, the senate went into executive session to vote Michel in. Senator Michel said that she feels confident taking over the position.  “This isn’t a resumé thing,” she said. “I feel that the position of Speaker needs to be filled and that I would do a good job of doing that.”Senators said they are confident that they made the right decision.   “I think it’s a great decision and I support it,” Senator Tyler Willkinson-Ray said.Ash said she agreed.”I feel perfectly comfortable passing the buck to senator Michel,” she said. “I have no qualms about her taking that position.