H. Guidelines for Partisan Political Action on Campus
Faculty Senate Bill 11-A-33 begins here.
A University exists, in part, as an institution in which the free and vigorous exchange of ideas is not only welcomed but encouraged. Partisan political activity should be welcomed on the campus of Southeast Missouri State University as an important ingredient in the life, of the mind and in the broad education of the students. The University should remain strictly neutral regarding partisan political activity. Therefore, procedures shall be set forth and maintained to enhance the neutrality of the University with respect to partisan political activity.
For purposes of this policy and the procedures promulgated to accompany it, the following definitions shall apply:
- “University” shall include the actual legal entity and any employee(s) or representative(s) thereof authorized to speak on behalf of the actual legal entity.
- “Partisan” shall include political parties, candidates thereof, and officials of a political party or political party related campaign.
Policy contains portions of Faculty Senate Bill 90-A-07 May 14, 1990
Approved by the Board of Regents June 18, 1990
Amended by Faculty Senate Bill 11-A-33 November 16, 2011
Approved by the Board of Regents March 23, 2012
Reviewed by President November 2012
Faculty Senate Bill 11-A-34 begins here.
- The University shall not support or endorse any candidate for local, state, or national office, nor shall it endorse or support any political committee organized for the purpose of supporting any candidate for office, nor shall it permit any activity on campus by any person, candidate, or political committee which suggests that the University endorses or supports any candidate or committee.
- The University shall not make any contribution, real or in kind, to or expenditure on behalf of any clearly identifiable candidate (or highly likely candidate) for any office. For the purposes of these guidelines, the terms "contribution" and "expenditure" are defined by relevant state and federal laws.
- The University shall not make any expenditure associated with an event that expressly advocates the nomination, election, or defeat of any specific candidate(s) or party.
- The University shall not make any expenditure associated with an event at which campaign contributions are solicited, made or accepted.
- The University shall specifically request in writing that legally independent organizations affiliated with the University (e.g., the Boosters, the Foundation, etc.) agree to adhere to these guidelines. Failure of such organizations to so agree should give the University reason to reconsider the nature of the relationship which exists between the University and such organizations.
- The presence of a candidate for office or political office holder at an event sponsored by the University or on campus as a result of an invitation by the University shall not constitute a violation of these guidelines unless the election or defeat of an identifiable candidate or party is advocated at the event or campaign contributions are solicited, made, or accepted at the event.
- The presence of a political candidate, office holder, or political party on campus for the purpose of an educational exercise (e.g., a discussion of the nature of political campaigns) shall not constitute a violation of these guidelines unless the election or defeat of an identifiable candidate or party is advocated at the event or campaign contributions are solicited, made, or accepted at the event.
- Since the University is a place in which the free and open exchange of ideas is both welcomed and encouraged, no political candidate or political party or organization on campus for the purpose of an educational exercise shall restrict in any way the freedom of expression or freedom of assembly of those at the event. This provision is not intended to prevent the University itself from enacting reasonable restrictions (e.g., limiting the number of persons within a facility, preventing the shouting down of a speaker, etc.).
- While it is recognized that participation in political activity is part of the total educational experience of our students, the University shall not require or encourage that students be excused from class in order to attend campaign events and partisan political events, nor shall the University require or encourage any deviation from its routine operation or its published calendar.
- The provision of facilities, generally open for noncommercial use, by the University to a candidate or political committee shall not constitute a violation of these guidelines unless such facilities are denied to opposing candidates or parties. Provision of such the University should take great care, and should see that affiliated organizations take great care, in such provision of facilities not to give the appearance of support for one candidate or party at the expense of another. Facilities generally open for commercial use shall be made available only under normal commercial terms.
Limitations and Exclusions
- These procedures are not meant to restrict any student political organizations (e.g., College Republicans, Young Democrats, candidates for elective Student Government offices, etc.) from the conduct of their usual activities, which are by their nature partisan or campaign-related. These organizations, however, should take care that their actions not be misconstrued as actions of the University.
- These procedures are not meant to restrict or in any way apply to the actions of individual University employees outside of their official responsibilities.
Procedures contain portions of Faculty Senate Bill 90-A-07 May 14, 1990
Approved by the Board of Regents June 18, 1990
Amended by Faculty Senate Bill 11-A-34 November 16, 2011
Reviewed by the President November 2011
Posted for 15 Day Review November 2011.