Associated Student Government senators used a portion of last week’s meeting to question the student body vice president about a Facebook post that caused a campus controversy and her actions following the post.
The questions ranged from interviews she had with national news organizations, whether she would continue to use the term “illegal alien” and what steps she had taken to further her education on the topic.
There were more than 50 community members and students in attendance, along with several administrators. Two uniformed Police and Safety officers also attended, due to safety concerns.
When Todd was asked whether she would use “illegal alien” in the future, she said she would.
“I can say it is a legal term, so if there was a situation that I needed to use it, I probably would,” Todd said. “But, again, unless the term changes, or when talking about that issue and there’s another word for it, I will use that, the correct words.”
Todd apologized for how her usage of “illegal aliens” hurt students, but said she did not apologize for or regret using the term.
“After speaking with students on campus, I understand that it is (dehumanizing) to some people, but again, as I have stated...I was not meaning to use it in a derogatory term,” Todd said. “I don’t regret it, because I was using it in a legal fashion, I was not trying to hurt anybody. But I am apologizing to those who it did hurt, I understand that words can hurt people.”
Todd appeared on “Fox & Friends” earlier this month and gave an interview with “Campus Reform,” an “American conservative news website focused on higher education,” according to its website.
Several senators asked about Todd’s status as a correspondent for Campus Reform, as the organization’s website lists her as the Kansas Campus Correspondent and as the vice president of student government.
According to the “Campus Reform” website, correspondents “investigate and report liberal bias on college campuses throughout their state.”
The website has an application process for those interested in the position, which requires a referral, the reason for their interest and organizations they are involved with.
Todd said she was unaware of being named a correspondent, and did not work for the organization.
“I’m not a Campus Reform correspondent,” Todd said. “They approached me after my post and everything and asked me to be one. I considered it, but I’m not. I don’t work for them.”
Todd said she would approach “Campus Reform” about correcting the error. As of Wednesday, Todd is still listed as a correspondent.
When asked about the purpose of interviewing with the news organizations, Todd said that she needed to share her side of the story, because she was being attacked for her views and her side of the issue was being left out.
“My intentions were to talk about my side of the story. The newspapers and the news sources, they came to me, they wanted me to talk about my story,” Todd said. “So that’s where I was talking about how I posted it and how it affected me.”
In those interviews, Todd said that she was acting as a student, not as the vice president of ASG. When she was introduced as the vice president of ASG on the “Fox & Friends” interview, she said that she did not notice being identified as such.
Todd also said that the original post was intended only to express her support of gubernatorial candidate, Kris Kobach.
“When I made my Facebook post, I wasn’t acting as the vice president, I was acting as a student and so I think when the talk of impeachment came up, that’s when I especially felt attacked, because it was trying to say I was an unfit leader, even though I wasn’t acting as a leader when I did it,” Todd said. “I still have a right to voice my opinions elsewhere.”
After questioning Todd and discussing their interpretations of the oath of office, Paul Frost, senator and junior accounting major, began a motion to start the impeachment process for Todd.
The motion failed, with 12 votes in favor, 1 against and 6 abstentions. In order for the motion to pass, two-thirds of the senate body would have to vote in favor, which would be 15 senators.
It was the second time a motion to impeach Todd was made. The first was at a senate meeting earlier this month.