UPDATE: 3/23/26 The location of the Elections Committee hearing has been changed to the Business Building in room BS 2006 at 6:15 pm
The Undergraduate Student Government Elections Committee has accepted complaints against the Sope Ladapo and Michael Thompson campaign for committing voter fraud during the 2016 undergraduate presidential elections. The Elections Committee is scheduled to hold a public hearing on Thursday, March 24 at 6:15 in the Business Building in room BS 2006.
IUPUI USG presidential and vice presidential elections took place March 7-9. The election saw a turnout of 705 voters. Lapado and Thompson campaign won the presidency with 367 votes representing 52.1 percent of the total vote count.
A total of seven complaints were filed against Ladapo and Thompson. One complaint is for voter fraud while the other six are for “Campaigning in Study Areas.” According to the records the infractions all took place on March 7 and all of the complaints were filed by the Sports Management Club president Jamie Collier.
The “Campaigning in Study Areas” complaints all read relatively the same. They’re based on pictures that the Ladapo & Thompson campaign posted to social media sites. In the pictures, taken in the IUPUI library, there are students holding a sign with a variation of “I voted for Sope and Thompson” written on it.
In one picture a student is seen holding one of those signs while sitting in front of a computer monitor. This computer monitor is opened to IUPUI’s TheDen.com and there are two notifications on screen.
The complaint Collier filed reads, “The second notification, however, is the notification that the student just voted, which is the top yellow box. This is photographic proof that this ticket is hovering over voters while they are casting votes and then asking them to hold the sign for them afterwards.”
When asked via messaging if they were formally charged by the elections committee, Ladapo said, “Well no but they are choosing to have a public hearing for the shock factor really. This is just how they publicly recognize the complaint. We have 24hrs to respond with a brief then we go to the public hearing.”
Each complaint suggests an amount of “sanction points” that violators should be sanctioned with. According to the USG Elections Code if someone accumulates eight points, “Upon the accumulation of eight (8) sanction points, an individual candidate, executive group, or campaign ticket shall be disqualified and have all votes previously credited to that campaign discounted from the election results.”
Ladapo and Thompson are facing 19 sanction points spread out across seven complaints. Only a few complaints need to stick in order to disqualify Ladapo and Thompson.
“For the record we were both part of the committee last year and I never remember ever hearing about anything close to a public hearing for this in the past,” wrote Thompson.
When asked if they were concerned about the number of sanction points they face, Ladapo replied, “Of course, there is a danger that this goes down in history as the election that turned people away from USG. Why? because this was a rear year of competition, or challenge, of bravery to fight the machine and the machine does what it does best. It fights to keep things the same, it fights to keep power as it knows best.”