Elections Process Q&A

Started by Jenson, April 09, 2016, 08:16:30 PM

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I've received a few questions lately from new members about how TLO conducts elections and how the Governance system works, so I figured I'd create this new Q&A. If you have a question not on the list, please post it here or PM me and I'll be happy to answer it.

When do elections take place?

TLO is a democratically run group. All Cabinet members and the President are elected by you, the members. Per the CoC, elections for President occur every calendar year as the President serves one-year terms. There is no limit as to how many terms a President can run. For all other Cabinet positions, there is an indefinite term. Once elected, an individual stays on the Cabinet until they resign or are recalled through a membership vote or by the President. Individuals would also be removed from the Cabinet if they are expelled from TLO.

What are the minimum qualifications to run for a position?

In order to run for President of TLO, you have to have been a member of TLO for at least 6 months and be ranked Provisional Officer or higher. You should also be aware that for Presidential elections, any disciplinary action taken against you for the past year will be reported for IA. For Cabinet positions, there are no minimum requirements at all, except that if you wish to run for a game commander position (such as RPG-X or STO CO or XO) you must play that game and be a part of the TLO fleet if you play STO.

How do elections work in TLO?

Elections happen in a few different phases when there is an opening, and elections are usually run by IA unless the IA head has a conflict of interest. It begins with a nomination thread which is open for a few days. During the nomination phase, anyone who wishes to run must declare that they want to run for the open position. Members may only nominate themselves, and not other people. At this point, members have a chance to ask nominees questions in a Q&A topic where candidates may make a statement as to why they feel they should be elected to the position and put forward any statements/arguments to support their candidacy. Members may also ask any relevant and respectful questions for the candidate to reply. Candidates have full discretion in determining what questions they will answer.

After the Q&A threads close, all members of TLO ranked recruit or higher may vote in an election poll to determine who will be elected to that position and take that seat on the Cabinet.

How do recall elections work?

Since Cabinet members don't have set terms, recall elections serve as a check to the Cabinet. A recall poll can be called by members and, if more members vote yes than no in a recall poll, that Cabinet member's position is put up for fresh elections, giving new candidates a chance to run for the position. There are two ways for members to bring a recall poll:

1. Public recall: Any member of TLO may publically call a recall vote against a member of the Cabinet. This is achieved by them making a recall poll in the elections both, outlining the reasons they feel a new election should take place for the position and leaving the poll open for 3-5 days with the "allow users to change their vote" box checkmarked. Anyone who wishes to bring a recall poll against a member is encouraged to contact the Head of Internal Affairs first to make sure that the format is done correctly. If more members vote yes than no, then the position goes to an election and the person currently holding the seat must defend their position in an election. If there is a tie or more members vote no, then the Cabinet member stays in their position and no election takes place.

2. Anonymous recall: In order to protect members' privacy, an option exists to anonymously call recall votes. In order to prevent abuse, however, anonymous recalls require a member to contact the IA head and inform them of who they feel should be recalled AND for another member of TLO to "second" the recall and state to the IA head that they, too, feel a recall election should take place. Both members may, if they wish, provide statements to the IA head about why new elections should take place for the position, and the IA head will publish those in a poll he will create for the recall thread without publishing their names. In this situation, the IA head is absolutely forbidden from disclosing the identities of those who are bringing the recall. As with the public recall, a majority must vote yes for a new election to take place. If members want to recall the IA head, then they should contact the President instead of the IA head to initiate the anonymous recall.

It's important to note that the recall process is NOT a disciplinary mechanism. Someone who is being recalled isn't necessarily doing anything wrong or breaking the rules—it's simply a statement by some members that they feel a new election should take place for the position that the member holds. Members are encouraged in recall polls to consider whether or not they think a fresh election should take place for the position and not necessarily that the individual has done something wrong. Since TLO does not have set terms for Cabinet positions, recall elections are the only check the members have to ensure the Cabinet stays representative of the members' interests.

What happens if only one person runs for a position?

If only one person runs for a position after nominations close, then the IA head will put up a "confirmation" poll where more members must vote yes than no that a person should hold the position in order for them to be elected. If this does not happen, then a new election takes place for the position.

What happens if there's a tie?

If there's a tie in an election, the candidates who are tied for first place will go into a run-off election which will last for a shorter amount of time. Runoff elections continue until one person gains a plurality of votes. Candidates who are not tied for first place will be dropped in subsequent runoff elections.

If you have any further questions about the elections process, please contact the IA head!

Martin Thompson

That is a nice document Jenson, Perhaps put it in the inphosphere and put a redirection link here?


Quote from: Martin Thompson on April 10, 2016, 05:55:06 AM
That is a nice document Jenson, Perhaps put it in the inphosphere and put a redirection link here?

Wonderful idea, Martin!