Alright, based on the discussion thus far, I have produced a draft set of amendments. These generally track the proposals I outlined in my initial post, with a few key changes:
Amendments to the Elections Act
An act establishing elections for office
1. Election Commissioner
(1) An Election Commissioner will be appointed by the Council on Regional Security to administer all forum elections.
(2) The Commissioner will be responsible for the creation of election notices, the organization of election forums, the verification of candidate eligibility, the distribution and collection of ballots, and counting and verifying cast ballots.
(3) The Commissioner may not run for or hold an elected office during their tenure as Commissioner.
- This does not prohibit the Commissioner from resigning to seek office via an election or finding an accepted surrogate to oversee the election in their place.
(4) The Commissioner will be a permanent position and shall be replaced as needed due to inactivity or ineligibility by the Council on Regional Security. The Assembly may recall a Commissioner for abuse of power or neglect of responsibilities through regular order.
(5) Any election-related disputes will be arbitrated by the Commissioner; should the dispute be on a matter of law, the Commissioner shall refer it to the High Court. The Commissioner will not finalize any election until all disputes have been settled.
2. Electoral Basics
(1) For forum-based voting, voters have the option to cast either a public or a shall vote by secret ballot., and may not alter it once cast.
- The method of casting secret ballots will be selected by the Election Commissioner. The chosen method must utilize an unaffiliated account or server, with the method and all votes remaining available for audit.
- Voters may not alter their votes once cast via the method selected by the Election Commissioner.
- Named ballots are not to shall not be released by the Election Commissioner under any circumstances.
(2) In each election, voters can, subject to limitations set for the specific voting method, vote for the Re-Open Nominations option, which shall function like a normal candidate in the election. If, under the voting method used, the option to Re-Open Nominations is a winner, the election process for the exact position won by it shall restart.
(3) To be eligible to be included on a ballot, a candidate must post a campaign in an area designated by the Election Commissioner. The campaign must prominently include a truthful declaration of all potential conflicts of interest the candidate may have within and outside of the South Pacific.
(4) To be eligible to vote in, or stand for, a forum-based election, a citizen must have been accepted by the Citizenship Committee before the period for nominations began for that particular election.
(5) If the voting method used in an election ties candidates, whether for elimination or winning, the Election Commissioner will select a method of arbitration, unless the tie can be resolved by special provisions set for the election in law. If the method chosen involves chance, an unaffiliated Discord bot will be used to generate a result in a public channel randomly using a coin toss or some similar set of pre-defined outcomes.
(6) Under Instant-Runoff Voting, the sole winner is determined as follows;
- As their ballot, a voter lists any candidates they wish in descending order of preference.
- Until a candidate has received an absolute majority of first-place preferences and thus becomes the winner, the candidate with the fewest first-place preferences is eliminated and the ballots get retallied, ignoring any eliminated candidates and discounting ballots solely listing eliminated candidates.
- If candidates tie for elimination, all those receiving the fewest second-place preferences among them are eliminated.
(7) Under Expanding Approval Voting, winners ‒ as many as specified for the respective position ‒ are determined as follows;
- As their ballot, a voter either indicates all candidates they approve of, or the option to Re-Open Nominations.
- Until enough winners have been found, the most-approved candidate among the non-winners becomes a winner.
- The option to Re-Open Nominations wins in place of the winners who have been approved on less than half of all ballots.
- As their ballot, a voter lists any candidates of whom they approve in descending order of preference.
- In the first round of the election, the first-preference approvals shall be tallied. If a candidate’s first-preference approvals constitute an absolute majority of ballots cast, then that candidate becomes a winner. If no candidate obtains an absolute majority of ballots cast, or if more than one winner is specified for the given election and there is more than one candidate running, then the election shall proceed to a second round.
- In the second round of the election, the first- and second-preference approvals shall be tallied. If, ignoring any candidate declared a winner in the first round, a candidate’s total first- and second-preference approvals constitute an absolute majority of ballots cast, then that candidate becomes a winner. If no candidate obtains an absolute majority of ballots cast, or if more winners are specified for the given election, then the election shall proceed to additional rounds until the requisite number of winners is elected.
- Any necessary additional rounds shall follow the same tallying method as the first and second rounds.
- If more candidates obtain an absolute majority of ballots in a given round than winners specified for the election, then the candidate with the highest total number of approvals in that round shall become a winner.
(8) Under Majority Voting, the sole winner is determined as follows;
- As their ballot, a voter indicates the candidate their vote shall go towards.
- If a candidate has received an absolute majority of votes, they are the winner; otherwise, the two candidates who have received the most votes advance to a runoff, held under the same rules as this round of voting. Should this runoff result in a tie, then the tie shall be broken according to the general tie-breaking procedure.
3. Office of the Delegate
(1) The Delegate will be elected in a two-round process constituting a single election, with the citizens voting on a slate of nominees on the forums, and candidates advancing from that process being voted on by regional poll on-site.
(2) On the 15th of January and July, the citizens will convene for the first round of Delegate Elections.
- Any eligible citizen wishing to run for Delegate may declare their candidacy, and the citizens will debate the merits of their platform. Any player who has been banned from World Assembly membership will be considered ineligible and any candidate who is later discovered to be banned from World Assembly membership will be immediately disqualified. Citizens wishing to run for Delegate must hold a number of endorsements equal to at least 80% of the existing general endorsement cap at the commencement of the election period.
- The campaign and debate period will last one weekfour days, after which the citizens will vote for threefour days.
- This round of voting for Delegate will use Expanding Approval Voting to determine two winners of positions as candidates in the second round. If candidates tie for being a winner, all of those tied candidates shall be considered winners.
(3) After the winners of the first round have been determined, the second round will commence with them those winners as candidates.
- The Election Commissioner will create a six-day-long regional poll through which eligible members may cast their ballots. The poll must provide instructions for them on how to do so, and may only allow Native World Assembly members to participate.
- A Dispatch containing the campaigns of all candidates will be created to aid voters in their choice.
- Members of the South Pacific Special Forces who are on deployment at the conclusion of the regional poll are eligible to cast a ballot. The Prime Minister shall provide a list of deployed personnel to the Election Commissioner. Members on the list can cast their ballot through a public post on the Regional Message Board which tags the Election Commissioner.
- The winner of this round, as decided using Majority Voting, will be declared the Delegate-elect.
(4) The Delegate-elect will be considered formally inaugurated upon achieving the most endorsements. Prior to inauguration, the sole responsibility of the Delegate-elect is to gather endorsements, in coordination with the incumbent Delegate and in cooperation with the Council on Regional Security. The incumbent will continue to hold the office of the Delegate and will remain responsible for all responsibilities of that office, serving out the remainder of their term, until the inauguration of the Delegate-elect.
4. Office of the Prime Minister
(1) On the 15th of January, April, July, and October, the citizens will convene to elect the Prime Minister.
- The election period will be organized into three phases:
- A four-day declaration of candidacy and campaign period.
- A two-day campaign-only period where candidates may campaign, and the citizens will debate the merits of their platforms.
- A three-day voting period.
- The respective winner, as decided using Instant-Runoff Voting, will be declared the Prime Minister-elect by the Election Commissioner.
- Any eligible citizen wishing to run for Prime Minister may declare their candidacy, and the citizens will debate the merits of their platform.
- The campaign and debate period will last four days, after which the citizens will vote for four days.
- The election will be conducted using Instant-Runoff Voting.
- The winner of the election will be declared the Prime Minister-elect by the Election Commissioner.
(2) The term for the incoming Prime Minister will begin the week after elections, on the first of the month. Before this inauguration, any and all election-related disputes must be settled. The outgoing Prime Minister and any appointed Cabinet ministers will maintain their offices until then. Provided that a candidate other than Re-Open Nominations wins the election, the term for the Prime Minister-elect shall begin on the first day of the month immediately following the election period. Any and all election-related disputes must be resolved prior to this inauguration date.
(3) If Re-Open Nominations wins the election, then the term for the Prime Minister-elect shall begin on the day immediately following the date on which the Election Commissioner finalizes the results of the repeated election process. If the repeated election process extends beyond the inauguration date specified in Article 4, Section 2 of this Act, then the outgoing Prime Minister and any appointed Cabinet ministers shall remain in office in a caretaker capacity until the Prime-Minister elect takes office.
5. Office of the Chair
(1) On the 15th of April and October, the Assembly will convene to elect the Chair of the Assembly.
- Any legislator wishing to run for Chair may declare their candidacy, and the Assembly will debate the merits of their platform.
- The campaign and debate period will last five days, after which the Assembly will vote for three days.
- The sole winner, as decided using Approval Voting, will be declared Chair of the Assembly by the Election Commissioner.
(2) The term for the incoming Chair will begin immediately following the conclusion of the election.
(1) The Assembly shall choose the Chair of the Assembly pursuant to the procedures set forth in Article 2 of the Legislative Procedure Act.
(2) A resolution adopting a Chair shall not constitute an election for purposes of Article 2, Section 2 of the Citizenship Act.
6. Vacancies of Office
(1) Should the office of Prime Minister become vacant, the Council on Regional Security shall promptly designate a citizen to serve as caretaker Prime Minister. The caretaker Prime Minister shall hold office until the day after the date on which the Election Commissioner finalizes the results of the special election provided for in Article 6, Section 2 of this Act.
(12) A special election will be held for a vacancy in the office of the Prime Minister. If at least half of the term remains as of the date on which the office becomes vacant, the elected Prime Minister elected in the special election will serve until the next regularly scheduled election. If less than half of the term remains, the elected Prime Minister will serve the remainder of the scheduled term and the additional subsequent full term.
(23) Should the office of Delegate become vacant, the next person in the line of succession will become interim Delegate until the next regularly scheduled election or special election, if one is required by Article 6, Section 4 of this Act. If no person qualifies for the office, then a special election will be held.
(4) If at least half of the Delegate’s term remains as of the date on which the office becomes vacant, then a special election will be held to fill the vacancy.
(3) In the event that the Chair of the Assembly office is vacant, the senior-most Deputy Chair of the Assembly, by order of appointment and availability, shall become Acting Chair of the Assembly. subject to the restrictions and regulations of the Chair of the Assembly. The Acting Chair may opt to call for a special election for the Chair or serve out the remainder of the unexpired term.
7. Separation of Powers
(1) Offices of the Coalition are the Delegate, the Prime Minister, appointed Cabinet ministers, the Chair of the Assembly, the Chief Justice, and any of their appointed deputies.
(2) It is not permitted for any individual to hold more than one office within the Coalition’s government.
(3) It is permitted to seek election or appointment to a new office while holding an existing office.
(4) Election or appointment to a new office constitutes explicit resignation of an existing office.
(5) No person occupying the Office of Prime Minister, an appointed Cabinet minister position, or the office of the Delegate may hold any equivalent office in a foreign region or organisation.
87. Constitutional Law
(1) The Elections Act is a constitutional law, and further amendments to it must meet constitutional amendment requirements.
Amendments to the Legislative Procedure Act
Legislative Procedure Act
An act to define the procedural rules of the Assembly
1. Legislative Rules
(1) Any legislator may propose a bill, resolution, or appointment, which will be debated and refined collectively in the Assembly under the guidance of the Chair.
(2) To be brought to a vote, a specific draft of a bill, resolution, or appointment must
- receive a motion to vote by a legislator,
- receive a second by another legislator,
- be affirmed to be in proper formatting by the Chair, and
- have been at debate for a minimum period of time equivalent to the length of its voting period.
(3) General laws, amendments, resolutions, and appointments will remain at vote for three days. Constitutional laws, constitutional amendments, resolutions dealing with matters of constitutional law, and treaties will remain at vote for five days.
(4) General laws, amendments, resolutions, and treaties require a simple majority of those voting to pass. Appointments, unless otherwise specified, require a simple majority of those voting to pass. Constitutional laws, constitutional amendments, and resolutions dealing with matters of constitutional law require a three-fifths supermajority of those voting to pass.
(5) Should a debate lead to multiple competing bills or resolutions on the same matter, the Chair will separately and simultaneously bring the competing bills or resolutions to vote, in the same manner as regular business is done. The bill or resolution that receives the most votes in favor and meets minimum threshold requirements for passage will become law.
(6) Any bill, resolution or amendment which has been inactive for more than one month may be considered defunct and archived at the discretion of the Chair.
(7) Any legislator may motion to cancel voting and withdraw a bill that has been brought to a vote so revisions can be made. The Chair may cancel voting on the bill, provided that there is a reason deemed sufficient by the Chair and no objection is raised within 24 hours of the motion being made and seconded. Should the motion and seconding be made within the final 24 hours of voting, the legislation shall not pass or fail until the Chair makes a ruling on the motion.
(8) Should any bill, resolution or amendment fail to become law, any proposal which is judged by the Chair as being substantially similar to that failed legislation shall be prevented from going to vote for two weeks after the closure of the vote. The Chair may waive this restriction should a legislator motion for them to do so, provided that there is a reason deemed sufficient by the Chair and no objection is raised within 24 hours of the motion being made and seconded.
(9) Should any bill, resolution or amendment become law, the document itself, its debate thread, and its voting thread and results shall all be archived.
2. Election of the Chair
(1) Only legislators shall be eligible to serve as Chair of the Assembly.
(2) The Assembly shall choose the Chair by resolution.
- Every resolution to adopt a Chair shall identify the legislator who shall serve as Chair and the length of the term for which that legislator shall serve as Chair.
- In no event shall any resolution to adopt a Chair provide for a term of service longer than twelve months.
- A resolution adopting a Chair shall constitute an Assembly vote for purposes of Article 3, Section 3 of the Legislator Act.
(3) The Chair shall serve until the expiration of the term specified in the motion adopting them as Chair, adoption by the Assembly of a resolution to vacate the chair, resignation, recall, loss of citizenship, or loss of legislator status.
23. Powers and Responsibilities of the Chair
(1) The Chair is responsible for creating voting threads and recording votes. In the event that the Chair does not perform these duties in a reasonable time frame, any legislator may create voting threads and record votes.
(2) The legislative history of each law will be recorded by the Chair. Legislative history will include reference to debate threads, voting results, and amendment history.
(3) The Chair must document the use of their discretionary powers including a rationale for using those powers in the relevant debate thread.
(4) The Chair may correct typographical errors, grammatical errors, naming or formatting inconsistencies at any time, as long as these corrections do not alter the original intent of the law, following a three day period in which the corrections are presented to the Assembly for comments. Any such corrections must be recorded with the legislative history of each law.
(5) The Chair may delay votes for a reasonable time frame if done for the purposes of vote scheduling or to avoid preemption of active debate by a vote.
(6) The Chair may freely appoint any number of deputies, who will be authorized to perform those legislative duties of the Chair that the Chair permits. Any changes in the roster of deputies must be posted publicly.
(7) The Chair may waive the mandatory debate period remaining on a particular piece of legislation should a legislator motion for them to do so, provided that there is a reason deemed sufficient by the Chair and no objection is raised within 24 hours of the motion being made and seconded.
34. Constitutional Law
(1) The Legislative Procedure Act is a constitutional law, and further amendments to it must meet constitutional amendment requirements.