Amy Crean (pictured above, middle), a member of the Impeach UCDSU President/Yes Campaign has responded to comments made by Katie Ascough in an article from the University Observer. In the email exchange with the University Observer, Ms Ascough stated “Several minutes after my election was announced, one of the main instigators of the Impeachment Referendum, called for my impeachment on Facebook and Twitter, quoting how many students would need to sign a petition, dissing the notion of democracy and saying she would not stand for a union leader who wasn’t pro choice”.
Image Above: The email exchange between Katie Ascough and the University Observer.
Speaking to the Tribune, Amy Crean explained her actions saying “I called for it not because of her views but how she essentially promised that those views would have an impact, as she stated that she would not assist the union in any pro-choice advocacy. I felt responsible for a certain amount of student apathy because I didn’t get heavily involved in the campaigning for any Presidential candidate last year or bring that much attention to her views because I thought it was more common knowledge. So then when it happened, I thought “We need to do something”. When she got voted in I thought “This is going to be a difficult year, a lot of students aren’t going to feel safe unless she does something publicly to say there’s going to be a change.”
“I called for an impeachment on the day of her election, I said this is the procedure for impeachment, you gather this many signatures, you hand it in and you call for a referendum. You can do that for almost any reason if you have student support, that’s how a democracy functions.”
Responding to the accusation that the Yes campaign are running a campaign based on a vendetta, Ms Crean said “. When I called for an impeachment, people were saying that was to do with personal beliefs. In fact it was to do with even the way her personal beliefs affected her campaign and the fact that she hid them and the fact she stated that she would be neutral. As a president you can’t just fully delegate a massive campaign especially such a massive campaign”.
“I didn’t feel that she would go with her policy of neutrality of saying “I’ll be neutral but also I’m going to delegate and step back from this campaign”. That’s not what neutral is. If you were there to represent a student body who voted for an issue and you say “I’m going to be neutral” and do nothing, neutrality isn’t doing nothing, neutrality is acting as that representative you’ve been voted in to act as.”
Ms Crean disagrees with claims that the impeachment campaign was started due to Ms Ascough’s pro-life views. “People don’t understand the line of where can you be an activist in a personal capacity and where is it political. When you’re in this position [of President], a lot of it is political. During her campaign it was quite clear that she was carrying views into the campaign, into the political sphere that didn’t belong there. I wasn’t ok with that and I think that naming views that I don’t think have a place in the union and saying they don’t have a place in the union is different to saying “I just don’t like these views”.
The impeachment referendum will take place next Wednesday and Thursday, October 25th & 26th.
Rachel O’Neill – Editor