NYU College Republicans is not alone in its candidate endorsement divide — the New York College Republicans Federation is also having controversy over the 2016 election. Cornell Republicans threatened to sue SPS senior Eli Nachmany for decertifying the club after it officially endorsed Libertarian Gary Johnson instead of the Republican party candidate.
Cornell sophomore Olivia Corn is the Cornell Republicans chairwoman, and she said this decision was made after multiple Facebook polls as well as a 5-1 vote among the executive board.
“[He] decided that our actions were unacceptable and steamrolled a secret and illegal vote through his executive board, which resulted in our chapter being stripped of our credentials,” Corn said. “As soon as I was made aware of this, I tore through the federation’s constitution and bylaws, and I found [there are] at least four sections he violated.”
She then began planning to appeal against the removal and said that these actions had two goals: to get Cornell reinstated in the federation and to force Nachmany to relinquish his role as chairman of the federation. Corn succeeded in her latter goal when Nachmany resigned on Friday, Sept. 16. Nachmany refused to comment on the record.
“He disliked our support for Gary Johnson and explained to me that even though Cornell did not violate any part of the Federation’s constitution, he expelled us as a message to other college chapters to fall in line with the Republican Party candidate,” Corn said. “In addition, Eli is a paid Trump staffer, something our lawyer believes may put the Federation’s 527 status in jeopardy.”
On Sept. 15, the Cornell Republicans’ lawyer, Ronald Kuby, sent a letter to the College Republicans National Chair titled “Emergency Appeal By Cornell College Republicans.” It said that the decreditation was an infringement of freedom of speech and of the club’s due process rights.
“The Federation issued a press release stating that it had conducted a meeting and was revoking my client’s credentials because College Republicans had the temerity to endorse a candidate other than Donald Trump in the upcoming election,” Kuby said. “This ultra vires act was masterminded by Mr. Nachmany, a Trump supporter who has taken a leave of absence to work on Trump’s campaign.”
Kuby closed the letter by saying if action was not taken within 10 days, the club would proceed to sue Nachmany.
“Also, now that Eli’s schedule has been cleared because he no longer has any duties as Chairman, he should have plenty of time to continue to try and Make America Great Again,” Corn said. “Eli Nachmany believes he is untouchable, that he can do whatever he wants without repercussions: I am here to show him that he is not.”
A version of this article appeared in the Monday, Sept. 19 print edition. Email Diamond Naga Siu at [email protected]