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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Leaked screenshot alleges compulsory election participation within Greek life

Leaked Change Party screenshots also continue to circulate

Leaked screenshot as seen on YikYak Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2023.
Leaked screenshot as seen on YikYak Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2023.

While UF Student Government Senate candidates will be voted into office Wednesday night, posts on the anonymous social media service YikYak allege mandatory political participation within fraternities.

YikYak posts obtained by The Alligator Tuesday night contained leaked screenshots from the online messenger app GroupMe, which appears to show 22-year-old UF law graduate student Jared Weingard instructing Greek life members on election procedures.

“I will be handling all things regarding chapter voting for this election cycle,” he wrote. “As you know, elections are this week, and it’s a big one. You have been chosen by your houses to be their representative for this election.”

Weingard worked with Florida Blue Key as an associate producer in 2021 and as an executive producer of Gator Growl in 2022.

He later provides details of a required meeting at fraternity house Delta Tau Delta to discuss house representatives’ responsibilities. 

“This meeting is MANDATORY. If you cannot attend, your house will need to find a replacement for you and please have them contact me,” he wrote.

Weingard also asked GroupMe members to ensure their Greek life members voted, with stickers as proof.

“SUPER IMPORTANT: please remind me your members to actually go vote, and to vote for all 37 off campus candidates,” Weingard wrote. “Please please please make sure they are not just grabbing stickers off the ground or from change kids handing them out.”

Weingard concludes by telling members to not share the message elsewhere. He could not be reached after three phone calls and three messages.

Screenshots of Change Party members’ messages — which leaked Sept. 24 — have also surfaced on YikYak, showing a member celebrating the party’s condemnation of DEI attacks as a “PR Stunt” on the online messenger app Slack.

Aidan Bush and Vivienne Serret contributed to this report.

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Aidan Bush

Aidan Bush is a third-year journalism major and the Spring 2024 Engagement Managing Editor of The Alligator. In his free time, he likes to listen to music and go kayaking.

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