Elections Act

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.
a. 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 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. Named ballots are not to be released 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 legislator must have been accepted by the Legislator 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;
a. As their ballot, a voter lists any candidates they wish in descending order of preference.
b. 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.
c. If candidates tie for elimination, all those receiving the fewest second-place preferences among them are eliminated.

(7) Under Approval Voting, winners ‒ as many as specified for the respective position ‒ are determined as follows;
a. As their ballot, a voter either indicates all candidates they approve of, or the option to Re-Open Nominations.
b. Until enough winners have been found, the most-approved candidate among the non-winners becomes a winner.
c. The option to Re-Open Nominations wins in place of the winners who have been approved on less than half of all ballots.

(8) Under Majority Voting, the sole winner is determined as follows;
a. As their ballot, a voter indicates the candidate their vote shall go towards.
b. 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 Assembly 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 first of every January and July, the Assembly will convene for the first round of Delegate elections.
a. Any eligible legislator wishing to run for Delegate may declare their candidacy, and the Assembly 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. Legislators 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.
b. The campaign and debate period will last one week, after which the Assembly will vote for 3 days.
c. This round of voting for Delegate will use 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 as candidates.
a. The Election Commissioner will create a week-long regional poll through which voters 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.
b. A Dispatch containing the campaigns of all candidates will be created to aid voters in their choice.
c. 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 Minister of Defense 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.
d. 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. Offices of the Cabinet

(1) On the first of every February, June and October, the Assembly will convene to elect the Prime Minister and the Cabinet.
a. After the first 4 days of the election period, during which legislators may declare their candidacy and campaign for only one position, and a campaign-only period of two days, where candidates may campaign and the Assembly will debate the merits of their platforms, the Assembly will vote for 3 days.
b. For each position, the respective winner, as decided using Instant-Runoff Voting, will be declared the Minister-elect by the Election Commissioner.

(2) The terms for the incoming Prime Minister and Cabinet ministers will begin the week after elections. Before this inauguration, any and all election-related disputes must be settled. The outgoing Prime Minister and Cabinet ministers will maintain their offices until then.

5. Office of the Chair

(1) Eight days before the end of a Chair’s term, the Assembly will convene to elect the Chair of the Assembly.
a. Any legislator wishing to run for Chair may declare their candidacy, and the Assembly will debate the merits of their platform.
b. The campaign and debate period will last 5 days, after which the Assembly will vote for 3 days.
c. 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.

6. Vacancies of Office

(1) A special election will be held for vacancies arising within the Cabinet, if at least half of the term remains. If less than half of the term remains, or the position is vacant due to nobody running in its election, the Cabinet may appoint a replacement until the next regularly scheduled election.

(2) 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. If no person qualifies for the office, then a special election will be held.

(3) If a Chair is no longer in office prior to the election of a new Chair, a deputy appointed by the outgoing Chair will serve as Acting Chair to exercise all powers and responsibilities of the office of the Chair, subject to all regulations and restrictions imposed upon the Chair by law. In the event that more than one deputy was appointed, the most senior deputy according to the order of appointment and availability will serve as Acting Chair. In the event that no deputy was appointed or is available, the Cabinet will designate a legislator to serve as Acting Chair.

7. Separation of Powers

(1) Offices of the Coalition are the Delegate, the Prime Minister and Cabinet ministers, the Chair of the Assembly, Local Councillors, 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 holding a Cabinet office or the office of the Delegate may hold any equivalent office in a foreign region or organisation.

8. Constitutional Law

(1) The Elections Act is a constitutional law, and further amendments to it must meet constitutional amendment requirements.