Steve G.

LNC hires parliamentarian in Keaton removal bid

In Libertarian, Libertarian Party-US, Libertarian Politics 2008, Politics on December 1, 2008 at 12:37 am

The LNC has hired a parliamentarian to help in its seemingly neverending quest to remove At-Large Representative Angela Keaton.  The report in question (see below) states that there is no provision in the Bylaws for removing an LNC member, as there is only a provision for suspending LNC members.  Then, it makes the leap of logic that a suspension (which is by definition temporary) will turn into a removal (which is by definition permanent) should Angela not appeal to the Judiciary Committee, or should her appeal be denied.

That is incorrect.  If there is no provision for removing an LNC member in the Bylaws, then she cannot be removed.  She can only be suspended.  Furthermore, a loss at the Judicial Committee level would mean only that the suspension had been upheld, and not that she had been removed.

While this may seem like nitpicking, since the term of suspension could technically be for the rest of her LNC term, it is not.  There is a huge difference between a suspension and a removal.  It is the difference between being suspended from school for three days, and being expelled from school.  It is the difference between showing up at work drunk and being told to go home and sleep it off without pay, and being fired for it.  There are many real-world examples of the significant difference between suspension and removal.  

In this case, there is yet another significant difference, and that is whether someone else will be permanently appointed to her position on the LNC, and whether that person would change the balance of power on the LNC.  

The report also states that the LNC needs 12 votes to suspend her.  Are there enough LNC members willing to vote against her for her to actually be suspended?  Perhaps, perhaps not.

Here is the document.  opinion-removal-lnc-at-large-1

Now, for a poll.

  1. Wow. He’s not just “a” parliamentarian. He’s the grandson of the Robert in “Robert’s Rules” and the lead author/editor of the current edition.

  2. NONE OF THIS IS MAKING SENSE?! Is there any actual REASON for them to do this?! Is there anything she did WRONG?!
    Are they suspending her for not acting as official as they want?
    I don’t want to hear any B-garsh darn-S from people that don’t like her, but I want someone who wants her off the LNC to give AN ACTUAL REASON WHY!!!

    THEY WASTED FUNDS THAT COME IN THROUGH CONTRIBUTIONS TO HIRE A PARLIAMENTARIAN!!! They’ve wasted so much time and money on this, and I don’t know why.

    Brian, really? Our debate team just found a copy of that and are using it to practice procedure.

    On a third note:
    GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Was there a vote by the LNC as required under the Bylaws to expend the funds to hire the parliamentarian? And who exactly IS the hired in mention, anyway?

    While the explanation in the PDF makes sense, I note two things. One, the Policy Manual is not mentioned, meaning what? It could be implied that the Policy Manual is meaningless in this situation. Because there is no reference to the Policy Manual in the Bylaws in the same way as there is for RRONR, the Policy Manual can be seen as possibly being an unlinked and therefore inapplicable document, which raises a whole other pile of issues and questions. Two, the clear illustration of a suspension minus appeal being a removal indicates a major problem with the Bylaws that needs fixing (I note CA has the same problem). A suspension needs a time period attached to it, even an indefinite one, but in any suspension a reinstatement is possible. A removal makes reinstatement impossible. Hence the two are not the same thing, and are improperly treated the same in the Bylaws, with the only difference being if there is a JudComm appeal. Proper arrangement requires that suspensions and removals be treated as separate issues and separate subjects.

  4. Wow! ElfNinosMom is a better parliamentarian than two of the authors of Robert’s Rules! Who knew? It rocks that she’s on our side!

  5. Mike, she released information from executive session. Now there is some debate over whether the executive session was valid, but that is the likely accusation. I don’t think we actually know for sure.

    The Policy Manual is kind of meaningless, yes, because they can and do ignore it wantonly. And they can amend it easily.

    This is another breadcrumb towards documenting the desire of the leadership to pursue this aggressively.

    The rules provide that notice also be given to “any other person(s) directly affected by the ruling” but in the case of suspension/removal of an at-large member of the National Committee, no particular persons appear to fit this description.</blockquote

    The entire membership would be directly affected.

    How deep does this rabbit hole go?

    Thanks for posting this ENM.

  6. …….should Angela not appeal to the Judiciary Committee, or should her appeal be denied…..

    Even more interesting, IMO, is how and where the Judicial committee makes its rules. Is there bylaws for it? Can it actually deny an appeal? How does its vote for upholding a “suspension” work….majority, super majority? If its called into action, do they have to convene? Will the video tapes of the last few meetings be needed as evidence? The LNC may be able to “suspend” Angela without cause, but I do not see the Judicial committee working that way.

    Looks like it is going to get interesting. Angela should go ahead and get that appeal letter ready and let them know up front that she will appeal, if needed.

  7. Readers who consult the bylaws will discover that “suspend” is a term of art defined in the bylaws. Under the Bylaws, suspension is temporary, namely if you are suspended and take no action the end of suspension is that you are gone permanently.

    This is obviously a feature, not a bug.

  8. Mike Theodore: I don’t see any evidence that money from contributors was used to pay for this. From the evidence available here, perhaps someone else paid for it or perhaps it was pro bono, though the latter seems unlikely. This year there were contributions of restricted funds that could be used only to hire a parliamentarian. I don’t know whether or not all those funds were used to pay for the outside Professional Registered Parliamentarian who served Friday and Saturday at the convention or whether there were funds left over. We’ll have more information when the FEC reports are filed.

    Mike Seebeck: Your first question is answered either by reading the document or by using google. The document was written and signed by Henry Robert III and Thomas Balch, two of the current authors of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised.

    Regarding your question about suspension versus removal, a suspension becomes a removal if the Judicial Committee does not reinstate within the specified period.

    Regarding your question about the LNC Policy Manual (which is a jumbled collection of Standing Rules and Special Rules of Order), is there a specific rule that you think is relevant here? I just had a quick perusal of the Policy Manual and I don’t see anything that Messrs. Robert and Balch overlooked. Do you?

    George Donnelly: The LNC entered into executive session at the last meeting by unanimous agreement of all the LNC members present. If there were a procedural flaw by which executive session was entered into, it would have had to have been raised at the time by means of a Point of Order. Once executive session had been entered into, it was too late to raise an objection, though a motion to rise from executive session would have been in order.

    volvoice: Some of your questions are answered by the document signed by the authors of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised. The Judicial Committee is required to get together and have a hearing if an appeal is filed in accordance with the bylaws. However, individual JC members are not required to show up. Five of seven must show up in order to transact substantive business. If five or more are present, a majority of those present can reinstate a suspended member. In the event of a tie vote, the suspension becomes a permanent removal. In the event that fewer than five get together, the suspension becomes a permanent removal. The JC can certainly request videotapes. No one is required to provide a videotape, but the JC is free to consider failure to provide evidence when making their decision.

    M Carling, Professional Registered Parliamentarian

  9. What, exactly, did Angela do?

    If she blabbed the minutes from an Executive Session, she should probably apologize.

    If what she blabbed can be shown to have damaged the party business in any way, she should probably be censured (depending, of course, on how bad the damage is). There IS a reason Boards call Executive Sessions, after all.

    If this reallly is all about her dumping Aaron, then perhaps he should get the Policy Manual amended so that dumping the LNC Treasurer romantically is listed as a cause for removal from the LNC. There is a reason that Boards have policy manuals, too.

  10. …..The Judicial Committee is required to get together and have a hearing if an appeal is filed in accordance with the bylaws…….

    M are you saying that they have to meet in a physical presence or could it be in a conference call?

  11. volvoice: According to the document written by the authors of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised, the Judicial Committee would have to meet in person, face-to-face. The National Association of Parliamentarians has granted me the certification of Professional Registered Parliamentarian, but I hesitate to second guess the expertise of the authors of Robert’s Rules.

    M Carling

  12. M Carling,

    You didn’t address if the nature of confidentiality is continuing and that the procedural problem in entering the Executive Session in violation of the rules creating a special session would cause the termination of that confidentiality requirement.

  13. Steve Meier: What procedural problem?

  14. The other question was the information that Angela broadcast from the executive session confidential? Whadid the LNC lawyer say?

  15. Isn’t it fascinating how so-called Libertarians — who often complain about arbitrary and capricious use of laws and rules to destroy the spirit of liberty in government — are now doing exactly the same to not only Ms. Keaton, but Libertarians as a whole?

    Ms. Keaton received by far the largest number of votes of any of the individuals on the National Committee for an at-large position.

    Ms. Keaton didn’t donate millions of dollars to Republicans (including Mr. Redpath’s opponent in his last race).

    Her “blabbing about executive session” consisted of her exercising her right to publicly dispute slanderous and libelous comments presented about her in that executive session.

    I have also heard disturbing things from several sources about top-ranking LNC executives referring to Ms. Keaton as a “fucking bitch” to a number of Libertarians who have called to inquire about this situation.

    Let’s please get one thing straight here — Mr. Carling and Mr. Starr and Mr. Redpath can indeed attempt to use RRO to remove Ms. Keaton from her position. They may even succeed (though that seems to me to be far from certain).

    The substance of the matter, despite the onerous and tedious drivel about parliamentary procedure, is that Ms. keaton AND THOSE WHO VOTED FOR HER are being systematically disenfranchised from involvement in the Libertarian Party by a small group of outsiders who wish to impose through parliamentary machinations what they could not win at the ballot box during our convention.

  16. M Carling,

    The lack of a motion containing what was to be discussed, a second and a vote as required by the LNC Policy Manual. These did not occur and are considered mandatory in order for an executive session to be in effect.

    Did the LNC suspend the special rule creating the Executive Session? If they didn’t and my understanding that to do so you need to give notice and have a two-thirds vote. If the LNC didn’t suspend the rules and following the process is mandatory then can the LNC expect that the confidentiality protections continue?

    F. EXECUTIVE SESSIONS
    1. LIMITATION OF USE OF EXECUTIVE SESSIONS
    The LNC may enter into Executive Session only in compliance with this policy.
    2. PREREQUISITES TO ENTERING EXECUTIVE SESSION
    Prior to entering into Executive Session, a motion must be made, seconded, and passed. The motion to enter Executive Session must list all reasons for doing so. If the list of reasons is solely comprised of the identified topics listed below, a majority of LNC members voting is required for passage. If any topic other than those listed below is given, a two-thirds vote of LNC members voting shall be required for passage.
    3. IDENTIFIED TOPICS FOR DISCUSSION IN EXECUTIVE
    SESSION
    Identified topics for entering into an Executive Session shall
    include:
    i. Legal matters (potential, pending, or past)
    ii. Regulatory and compliance matters (potential, pending, or
    past)
    iii. Contractual compliance
    iv. Personnel matters (including evaluation, compensation,
    hiring, or dismissal)
    v. Board self-evaluation
    vi. Strategic issues (only those requiring confidentiality)
    vii. Negotiations (potential, pending, or past)

  17. If I have read this correctly the LNC by super majority can remove from office a member for “cause” where “cause” is undefined.

    I started my open letter with an accusation of autocratic and arbitrary against the proposed LNC action. If LNC’s proposed cause is breach of confidentiality or for wearing a Boston Tea Party tank top or for personality conflicts then my accusation will be strongly reinforced.

    I doubt I will resign from the Party but I will likely refuse to continue to financially support the National Party. I also might buy A Boston Tea Party tea-shirt to wear to Libertarian functions.

  18. I was there and my recollection is that the motion to enter into executive session was made, seconded, and passed by unanimous consent. If there were an objection, it would have needed to be raised at the time by means of a Point of Order.

    M Carling

  19. I was there and my recollection is that the motion to enter into executive session was made, seconded, and passed by unanimous consent. If there were an objection, it would have needed to be raised at the time by means of a Point of Order.

    Irrelevant.

    If, during an “executive session,” a slanderous, libelous or defamatory assertion is made about a participant, that individual is fully within his or her rights to publicly dispute the assertion.

    Otherwise, executive sessions can be transformed into Soviet-style secret courts, sans rules of evidence, presentation of charges, and with severe punishment for anybody slandered in that discussion from stepping forward to defend themselves from a whisper campaign. While that may be the aspiration of some former and present LNC members, I daresay it is not the goal of the massive plurality who elected Angela Keaton as their at-large representative… and who resent the continued parliamentary games targeted at disenfranchising them.

  20. M Carling,

    The minutes of that meeting fail to show the motion, its wording, who made it and who seconded it let alone the vote. This motion to enter an executive session would be a main motion and according to RONR should be recorded in the minutes. Where it is clearly missing.

    Did you approve those minutes?

    I understand the meeting was video taped. I trust that given the controversy surrounding this meeting that the video has been protected rather then destroyed?

  21. I trust that given the controversy surrounding this meeting that the video has been protected rather then destroyed?

    If the video records were as well-maintained as the LNC’s financial statements appear to have been, I wouldn’t hold my breath.

  22. M Carling,

    Humor me on this. If the LNC meeting did not have the required motion, the second would the continuing protection of confidentiality continue to exist?

    Page 244 and Page 17 of RONR

  23. Steve Meier: No, I did not approve those minutes. From a parliamentary perspective, they really are not minutes. The document which the LNC calls minutes is really a meeting report. Real minutes are substantially different and contain both more and less information. I have no information about the current status of the videotape.

    M Carling

  24. If the video tape were to no longer exist then I find it to believe that the Minutes wouldn’t become the ultimate authority on what happened in that meeting. Given that they have been approved by those attending. I suppose the secretaries notes might also be informative.

  25. M Carling,

    I apologize, I thought you were on the LNC and you are not. You are not required to approve the minuets or object to them. Also, of course it would unreasonable to expect you to know about the condition of the recording.

  26. >Her “blabbing about executive session” consisted of her exercising her right to publicly dispute slanderous and libelous comments presented about her in that executive session.The substance of the matter, despite the onerous and tedious drivel about parliamentary procedure, is that Ms. keaton AND THOSE WHO VOTED FOR HER are being systematically disenfranchised from involvement in the Libertarian Party by a small group of outsiders who wish to impose through parliamentary machinations what they could not win at the ballot box during our convention.<

    This (and other nasty behavior on the part of Mr. Starr) is one of the reasons I am seriously thinking of resigning from the LP and joining the Boston Tea Party.

    Part of me wants to stay (I have been a Libertarian since about 1974, after all). But I know the movement has a lot of oldtimers still active. And lots of people who pledge more than my meager monthly pledge. And a LOT of elected Libertarians.

    In fact, I am probably the only longtime-monthly-pledging-elected Libertarian who feels this way.

    Honestly, the real reason I don’t resign is that no one would miss me. Making a gesture is pointless if nobody notices.

  27. Apology accepted. The presumption of facts not in evidence seems to be a recurring theme throughout this thread and assuming that I’m still an LNC member was perhaps the least of them. The title set the tone. Does anyone actually know for a fact that the LNC hired the authors of Robert’s Rules of Order?

    M Carling

  28. Me again:

    >Her “blabbing about executive session” consisted of her exercising her right to publicly dispute slanderous and libelous comments presented about her in that executive session<

    Doesn’t sound like she did any damage to Party business.

    They should drop the whole thing. We have more important issues to worry about.

    (this seems to have been cut from my previous comment)

  29. Sorry, M, but that doesn’t answer the question. Seeking clarification in a letter from the kings of parliamentary gobbledygook is not hiring a parliamentarian, which is actually having one present in person to handle the rules and procedures of a meeting, like is done at conventions. “Hire” has a different meaning than “consult”, which is what appears to have been done here in the continuation of the Great LP Fishing Expedition of 2008. If Redpath consulted a parliamentarian, that’s one thing that he can do, but if he hired one then the LNC oversight is required per the Bylaws.

    As for the Policy Manual, unless the Bylaws delegates to it procedural powers for meetings and business as it explicitly does with RRONR, then the Policy Manual has no meaning. That derivation and delegation is necessary from a legal sense, but also from a common sense. The idea that something is implicitly permissible if it is not explicitly prohibited is utter nonsense.

  30. Of course, the obvious solution is one that won’t happen: if Angela behaved so egregiously that she should go, then the LNC should move that the delegates from the last convention recall her from her elected office. IOW, the delegates elected her, and can remove her. Having the LNC second-guess the will of the delegates is just not appropriate. That would require a simple Bylaws change that I doubt the current Bylaws committee would recommend.

  31. Meanwhile, the Party is going broke and the membership is pissed. Nice priorities, huh?

    The best thing the LNC can do is immediately table all discussion indefinitely and get on with real business of building the Party and advancing public policy in a libertarian direction–a focus that appears to be severely lacking.

  32. M Carling wrote “The title set the tone. Does anyone actually know for a fact that the LNC hired the authors of Robert’s Rules of Order?”

    The report was prepared for Bill Redpath in his capacity as Chairman of the Libertarian Party, as the opinion letter itself makes very clear. What Redpath does in his capacity as Chair is done on behalf of the LNC. Ergo, the LNC hired the parliamentarian for an opinion on this issue.

  33. BTW, the letter authors are also incorrect. The JudComm is only required to meet in person per the JudComm Rules IF a majority of the JudComm members request it. There is nothing in A8S5 or A9 or the Bylaws that require it. M’s interpretation is incorrect. See http://www.lp.org/files/pdfs/bylaws-2008.pdf, page 14.

    Which raises the even simpler, more basic question: A lack of reading the obvious here makes me wonder if the letter is even authentic? Can someone get independent confirmation from the RRONR folks?

    And George is correct: the entire membership is an affected party. A physical JudComm hearing might as well be a rump convention.

  34. “From a parliamentary perspective, they really are not minutes. The document which the LNC calls minutes is really a meeting report. Real minutes are substantially different and contain both more and less information.”

    M, does that mean the LNC is not keeping real minutes, that is, Sullentrop is not doing his job as A7S6 requires? Should Sullentrop then be removed for a REAL cause, dereliction of duty? Should he get a pass?

    Sorry, what’s good for the goose is good for the gander.

  35. M Carling wrote:

    This year there were contributions of restricted funds that could be used only to hire a parliamentarian. I don’t know whether or not all those funds were used to pay for the outside Professional Registered Parliamentarian who served Friday and Saturday at the convention or whether there were funds left over.

    It would be the height of absurdity if funds raised by Angela Keaton to hire an independent parliamentarian for the Convention were used to pay a parliamentarian for an opinion against her.

    I am also interested in knowing how this opinion was contracted. By way of analogy, I would get two very different letters if I went to a lawyer and said “give me an objective assessment of the legal issues involved in situation X” versus “give me your best legal argument that I was right in situation X”. Both letters could be legally sound even though they would be very different.

    Brian Holtz wrote:

    Wow. He’s not just “a” parliamentarian. He’s the grandson of the Robert in “Robert’s Rules” and the lead author/editor of the current edition.

    I have seen prior opinions from very smart parliamentarians that misunderstood LP documents. That does not diminish their grasp of RRONR… just of the LP documents they spent far less time with. So while the credentials of the authors of this opinion are quite impressive, an appeal to authority alone is not determinative to me.

    Steve Meier:

    The minutes of that meeting fail to show the motion, its wording, who made it and who seconded it let alone the vote. This motion to enter an executive session would be a main motion and according to RONR should be recorded in the minutes. Where it is clearly missing.

    I agree with you, but that point seems irrelevant to this particular discussion. If the minutes are not correct, they should be amended. That the minutes are not accurate doesn’t mean what was done was illegitimate.

    I was at the meeting. A motion was made and seconded which included reasons for the reasons for entering Executive Session.

    Tom Knapp wrote (on Independent Political Report):

    One thing that’s interesting about the letter is that the “apologize or be suspended motion” which it seems to proceed from is inoperant — the minutes of the September meeting clearly state that said motion was withdrawn.

    This is the crux of the matter.

    We are not privy to mail ballots since the meeting though. Has any mail ballot been passed which provides for suspension like discussed in the opinion?

    Removal LNC At-Large Opinion (pp. 3-4):

    For example, continuing to assume there were 17 members of the National Committee in office, by a vote of 12 or more a resolution could be adopted that 1)
    directed an at-large member to issue an apology or take some other remedial action for stated offenses by a named date; 2) directed some other entity, pursuant to a delegation of power thereby authorized, thereafter to determine by majority vote whether the direction to apologize or take other remedial action was adequately complied with; and 3) provided that, if the designated entity determined that the directed apology or other remedial action was not adequately complied with, the at-large member would thereby automatically be suspended.

    Was a mail ballot like that proposed? If so, did it pass? If so, when did it pass? If so, did the delegated committee decide she had not adequately complied? If so, when?

    The big question on my mind is:
    Has this already happened, or was the opinion contracted in anticipation of a future motion at the December meeting?

    Removal LNC At-Large Opinion (p. 4):

    In such a case, the time for appeal would run from the date of the designated entity’s vote, rather than from the date of the National Committee vote, since the former would constitute the actual suspension.

    Regarding the substantive opinion itself, my main concern is procedural due process. Was Angela on notice that failure to appeal a subcommittee decision would mean she was automatically removed?

    One could argue that ignorance of the rules is no defense and the rules themselves should have put her on notice. That ignores the reality that this was a complex decision though. If most everyone involved thought removal was not automatic and thought she didn’t have to appeal until a future LNC vote (e.g., if many other LNC members thought that), it was rational of Angela not to feel put on notice by the subcommittee decision.

    LP Bylaws Article 8, Section 12:

    Upon appeal by ten percent of the delegates credentialed at the most recent Regular Convention or one percent of the Party sustaining members the Judicial Committee shall consider the question of whether or not a decision of the National Committee contravenes specified sections of the Bylaws. If the decision is vetoed by the Judicial Committee, it shall be declared null and void.

    The ultimate appeal for interpretation of the LP Bylaws and RRONR as it applies to the LNC is the LP Judicial Committee, not a Professional Registered Parliamentarian opinion.

    If LNC decisions can be delegated, it seems clear that those delegated decisions should also be subject to appeal to the Judicial Committee. That may be the appropriate route to appeal this if Angela’s appeal of the suspension were deemed by the LNC or a delegated subcommittee to have passed by without being exercised.

  36. ElfNinosMom: That’s a non sequitor. You could have paid someone to prepare a letter addressed to Chairman Redpath. That doesn’t mean the LNC hired anyone.

    Mike Seebeck: I’m neither an LNC member nor a JC member, so it’s not my responsibility to judge which offenses justify removing someone from LP office. If you don’t like the way the duties of a particular office are being executed, you have the option of running for that office. We don’t have to go back very far in LP history to recall former Secretaries who didn’t produce any sort of record of what happened in meetings or to recall one former Secretary who still refuses to turn over old minutes and the LNC’s corporate seal.

    I’m just explaining the rules. I’m not judging anyone here.

    I do find it interesting how many people are rushing to declare guilt or innocence based on wild guesses about what the charges might be. I don’t envy current LNC members for having to deal with this.

  37. M, you missed the obvious point that the LNC is chasing shadows instead of doing real political work and doing it right. Well, maybe you partially didn’t, based on your terse reply, but past wrongs don’t create a pass for current problems.

    And you explained the rules incorrectly as well, as I pointed out regarding JudComm meetings.

    And there would be no “wild guesses about what the charges might be” if the person or persons on the LNC bringing them actually grew a pair and actually put them out publicly so those of us asking what they are (including Keaton herself!) get that question answered and can see for ourselves. The lack of transparency is the underlying problem here. Sullentrop not doing his job recording minutes and destroying the video tapes, or what Keaton is being railroaded for, are are simply symptoms of the bigger problem, which is a generally lousy job in certain areas to the detriment of the Party.

    And AFAIK I’m not running for LNC. The Officership of the LP has far to go to earn respect for me to consider even thinking about that (Jingozian excepted).

  38. Chuck Moulton writes: “I am also interested in knowing how this opinion was contracted. By way of analogy, I would get two very different letters if I went to a lawyer and said “give me an objective assessment of the legal issues involved in situation X” versus “give me your best legal argument that I was right in situation X”. Both letters could be legally sound even though they would be very different.”

    Chuck, you’re a member of the National Association of Parliamentarians. You should review our Code of Ethics. You can find it on page 28 of your membership manual. In particular, 4.3 reads “Advise the client on the proper application of the accepted rules of parliamentary procedure notwithstanding the client’s personal desires in the matter.” You just suggested that Henry Robert and Thomas Balch either already have or would have if asked violated our Code of Ethics. In either case, you owe them an apology.

    Michael Seebeck: I can’t find anyplace where you pointed out any errors in my explanation.

  39. Meanwhile, our past Presidential candidate has just endorsed Republican Senator Chambliss for re-election. Barr repeats a long string of lies glorifying the Bush Republican War Party:

    “Sen. Chambliss is closer to the Libertarian position on a number of key issues including: shrinking the size of government, less government spending, abolishing the IRS, replacing the income tax with a consumption tax and ending the government bailouts.”

    You will find that the Republican Party fits none of these descriptions.

    “And there is one other major consideration: the Legislative branch of our government should not be a rubber stamp for the Executive branch.”

    Where was Senator Chambliss when the war crimes of the Bush torture administration where exposed? To call Republican Senators rubber stamps is to insult every rubber stamp ever made.

    I seem to recall that Chambliss was tending to cheer Bush on, but perhaps I misremember.

    By the way, where were the Barr endorsements for our *Libertarian* candidates? The LPNH could have used one.

  40. M:

    “volvoice: Some of your questions are answered by the document signed by the authors of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised. The Judicial Committee is required to get together and have a hearing if an appeal is filed in accordance with the bylaws. However, individual JC members are not required to show up. Five of seven must show up in order to transact substantive business.”

    and

    “volvoice: According to the document written by the authors of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised, the Judicial Committee would have to meet in person, face-to-face.”

    This is incorrect, as I pointed out (stuck in the moderation queue due to a hyperlink):

    “BTW, the letter authors are also incorrect. The JudComm is only required to meet in person per the JudComm Rules IF a majority of the JudComm members request it. There is nothing in A8S5 or A9 or the Bylaws that require it. M’s interpretation is incorrect.” (Bylaws hyperlink removed)”

    As a former JudComm member you should know this already.

  41. According to the document written by the authors of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised, the Judicial Committee would have to meet in person, face-to-face.

    I’ve read the opinion and I’ve come to the same conclusion as Mr. Seebeck re: the requirement for a face-to-face meeting of the Judicial Committee.

    Art. 9, Sec. 3 of the LP Bylaws authorizes the Judicial Committee to develop Rules. These Rules are submitted to the LNC for approval and, if adopted, become a set of Special Rules.

    The last set of these special rules was approved by the LNC in 1989 and can be read at the bottom of the LP Bylaws. These rules authorize a telephonic meeting unless members of the Judicial Committee request otherwise.

    The Parliamentarian’s opinion noted that this is in conflict with RONR’s procedures, which require face-to-face meetings. However, the opinion incorrectly resolved that conflict in favor of RONR, when it should have been resolved in favor of the Judicial Committee Rules.

    Art. 13 of the LP Bylaws says that RONR applies when it is not in conflict with the Bylaws or Special Rules. Since the Judicial Committee Rules are Special Rules and have been adopted into the bylaws by LNC approval, I am not persuaded that RONR can supersede them in this instance.

    As a member of the committee, I’ll refrain from commenting on any of the other issues.

  42. Chuck,

    So of the four people I have discussed this with I have

    1 I think we voted
    1 The chair suggested we move into an executive session as asked if there was any opposition (I am paraphrasing)
    2 There was a motion and a second and….

    The first two were from current LNC Members.

    Should the LNC Minutes be amended sure if they are inaccurate. But I also question why they have been approved if they are inaccurate?

    At this point, I think the video tape should be examined and if it isn’t then the secretaries notes. If these don’t show the motion than I think the minutes should be left as they are.

    I still haven’t heard from any registered parliamentarian on if supposing the motion and second were missing would the protection against breach of confidentiality become null and void or not?

  43. Chuck,

    There were three entries into executive session recorded in the minutes. Can you tell us for each of these who made the motion, who seconded and what the motions said?

  44. Nick: Not everything in RONR can be superseded by a special rule of order. For example, the one person one vote rule cannot be superseded by a special rule of order. In the case at hand, RONR is clear that teleconferences can only be authorized by the bylaws, not by lesser rules. That the JC can adopt standing rules and special rules of order doesn’t help here. Only a bylaw explicitly authorizing teleconferences would suffice.

  45. M.

    Please quote the section that you are referring to here…for those of us who are RONR challenged.

  46. The Bylaws authorize the Judicial Committee to adopt Special Rules subject to the approval of the LNC. Those Special Rules that adopted a procedure for holding synchronistic meetings via teleconference were approved by the LNC as required by the applicable Bylaw (Art. 9, Sec. 3). Such teleconferences do allow for simultaneous aural communication as required by RONR, and thus do not violate the underlying requirement of a “meeting.” See http://www.aipparl.org/pdf/AIPemeet5.PDF on Electronic Meetings, specifically pp 6-7, where it states that:

    Synchronistic Meetings
    The 10th edition has a far more positive slant on synchronistic meetings. Synchronistic meetings occur with participants in different places at the same time. The reference to synchronistic meetings can be found on pages 482-483. It reads:

    The bylaws may authorize a board or committee (or even a relatively small assembly) to meet by videoconference or teleconference. If they do, then such a meeting must be conducted by a technology that allows all persons participating to hear each other at the same time (and, if a videoconference, to see each other as well). The opportunity for simultaneous communication is central to the deliberative character of the meeting, and is what distinguishes it from attempts to do business by postal or electronic mail or by fax (see p. 2). It is advisable to adopt special rules of order and standing rules, as appropriate, to specify precisely how recognition is to be sought and the floor obtained during videoconferences and teleconferences.

    emphasis mine

  47. Sorry, M, but Nick is correct. RRONR only applies where there is no Bylaw or Rule promulgated by the Bylaws. In this case, the JudComm Rules are a direct consequence of A9S3 as a power delegated to the JudComm by the Bylaws, meaning the JudComm rules have the operational effect of a Bylaw, and therefore RRONR cannot apply. Had the JudComm rules not existed, then RRONR would apply. RRONR is designed in A13 to fill in the gaps not covered by the Bylaws and Rules, not override them.

    Further, look at A13:

    “…all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with these bylaws and any special rules of order adopted by the Party.”

    If the JudComm Rules are not Special Rules of Order, then what are they? If RRONR can override specific rules, then what’s the point of those rules?

    In any case, since the Rules are inconsistent with RRONR, per A13, as you say, RRONR cannot apply.

  48. “The bylaws may authorize a board or committee (or even a relatively small assembly) to meet by videoconference or teleconference.” RONR (10th ed.), p. 482, l. 28-30.

  49. BTW, the JudComm rules sure aren’t standing rules, that’s for sure. But they do qualify as special rules of order.

    To quote RRONR, Art. XI, Section 67:

    Rules of Order should contain only the rules relating to the orderly transaction of business in the meetings and to the duties of the officers. There is no reason why most of these rules should not be the same for all ordinary societies, and there is a great advantage in uniformity of procedure, so far as possible, in all societies all over the country. Societies should, therefore, adopt some generally accepted rules of order, or parliamentary manual, as their authority, and then adopt only such special rules of order as are needed to supplement their parliamentary authority. Every society, in its by-laws or rules of order, should adopt a rule like this: “The rules contained in [specifying the work on parliamentary practice] shall govern the society in all cases to which they are applicable, and in which they are not inconsistent with the by-laws or the special rules of order of this society.” Without such a rule, any one so disposed can cause great trouble in a meeting.

    Standing Rules should contain only such rules as may be adopted without previous notice by a majority vote at any business meeting. The vote on their adoption, or their amendment, before or after adoption, may be reconsidered. At any meeting they may be suspended by a majority vote, or they may be amended or rescinded by a two-thirds vote. If notice of the proposed action was given at a previous meeting or in the call for this meeting, they may be amended or rescinded by a majority vote. As a majority may suspend any of them for that meeting, these rules do not interfere with the freedom of any meeting and therefore require no notice in order to adopt them. Generally they are not adopted at the organization of a society, but from time to time as they are needed. Sometimes the by-laws of a society are called standing rules, but it is better to follow the usual classification of rules as given in this section. The following is an example of a standing rule:

    Resolved, That the meetings of this society from April 1 to September 30 shall begin at 7:30 P.M., and during the rest of the year at 8 P.M.

    No standing rule, or resolution, or motion is in order that conflicts with the constitution, or by-laws, or rules of order, or standing rules.”

  50. The LP bylaws do not authorize teleconferences. That the LP bylaws authorize the adoption of special rules of order is irrelevant to the question at hand, as special rules of order are not powerful enough to authorize teleconferences — only bylaws can do that. Ours don’t.

    If you don’t want to believe me, go ask in the Question and Answer Forum at robertsrules[dot]com.

  51. Mr. Carling,

    What precisely is your role in all this? This is a sincere question, not a dig. I understand you have played a key advisory role in LNC meetings and at the Denver convention. Yet I also understand you are not an officer of the Libertarian Party. To what extent do you have influence over these matters?

  52. Sorry, M, that doesn’t fly either. The JudComm Rules are special rules of order by RRONR’s own definitions cited above, so RRONR can’t override them per A13. It doesn’t matter if a bylaw can authorize a teleconference or not, because A13 takes the decision away from RRONR in any case! Technically A9 doesn’t authorize meetings at all–A9 only references the JudComm “considering” “subject matter”, and all other references in the Bylaws are by implication only. The ONLY place where a JudComm meeting is explicitly mentioned is the JudComm Rules (not including Convention Rules, which are inapplicable in this case anyway).

    Peter, M’s role is that of a former JudComm member (chair, I believe) and LNC member, and the Barr POC liaison to the LNC, who, as alleged by some others, along with Mattson want to vie to replace Keaton on the LNC.

  53. M Carling wrote: “You could have paid someone to prepare a letter addressed to Chairman Redpath. That doesn’t mean the LNC hired anyone.”

    M Carling: So now you are asserting that I paid a parliamentarian to send a letter to Redpath? Wow, that’s one of the wackiest comments in the history of LFV (and there have been some real doozies, so that’s really saying something). ROFLMAO

    Yes, I could technically do that, assuming the parliamentarian is inclined to address advice to a third party who did not retain him and did not even ask for his opinion (but given his credentials, I’d like to give him the benefit of the doubt in believing he would not be willing to do that), but I have no motive to do it and in fact did not do it. Nor would I do it, even if I were inclined to spend my own money to advise Redpath (fat chance of that happening, by the way) since he should have consulted with an attorney specializing in corporate law, and not a parliamentarian.

    You however seem to be asserting that the LNC didn’t retain the parliamentarian to advise Redpath, so the question becomes, who did? Who would have a motive to do it? I can think of one person in particular on the LNC who would have a strong motive to do that in this particular situation. Or, was it you? After all, you have far more motive to get personally involved in this fiasco than I ever would.

    If you tell me who wrote the check, I’ll happily change the thread to reflect that information. Until then, however, given that it was addressed to Redpath in his capacity as LNC Chairman, and in light of the man’s credentials suggesting he would not advise Redpath unless Redpath asked for his advice, the title stands.

  54. Mr. Orvetti: I’m just a Life Member of the LP who happens to have been certified by the National Association of Parliamentarians as having a level of expertise in such questions. At the convention in Denver, I served as an assistant to the Secretary, I served as chairman of the Bylaws Committee and, on Sunday and Monday, I served as the appointed Parliamentarian to the convention. For the sake of complete disclosure, I’m also currently chairman of the Audit Committee, though that doesn’t bear on the matter at hand. Several LNC members, state chairs, etc. consult me from time to time on parliamentary questions.

    M Carling, Professional Registered Parliamentarian

  55. Put it another way: A13 has Bylaws and Special Rules of Order override RRONR. JudComm Rules are Special Rules of Order. Therefore the JudComm Rules overrride RRONR where they conflict.

    If RRONR overrides Special Rules of Order, (which is inconsistent with the above RRONR citation which includes A13 almost verbatim!), then no Special Rules of Order, including the Convention Rules, have any bearing. That directly conflicts with A13. That makes no sense.

    This is really not as confusing as it seems. Bylaws flow from delegates. Rules can flow from either delegates or the Bylaws. RRONR takes care of the areas that the Bylaws or Rules don’t.

  56. M Carling wrote: “Only a bylaw explicitly authorizing teleconferences would suffice.”

    So you believe the bylaws must explicitly authorize teleconferences, but that they don’t have to explicitly authorize the removal of an elected representative?

    Wow. Just, wow.

  57. Where can I find the specific allegations against Ms. Keaton that led to this item being placed on the agenda?

  58. Mike Seebeck: Your interpretation is amusing, but incorrect. As I wrote before: If you don’t want to believe me, go ask at the Question and Answer Forum at robertsrules[dot]com.

    ElfNinosMom: I have not made any assertions that anyone wrote a check. You have. I have asserted that we don’t know. I only know that I have not written a check.

    I just checked and Thomas Balch, one of the authors of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised who signed the document you posted, is an attorney specializing in non-profit corporate law in the DC area (where the LNC is incorporated). Google is wonderful.

  59. ElfNinosMom wrote “So you believe the bylaws must explicitly authorize teleconferences, but that they don’t have to explicitly authorize the removal of an elected representative?”

    LP bylaws do explicitly authorize the removal of an elected representative.

  60. “Having the LNC second-guess the will of the delegates is just not appropriate. That would require a simple Bylaws change that I doubt the current Bylaws committee would recommend.”

    Michael, are you recommending that Bylaw 8.5, allowing LNC to suspend an at-large member for cause, be repealed? Would you also repeal Bylaw 7.8, allowing LNC to suspend an officer for cause?

  61. Steve Meier:

    There were three entries into executive session recorded in the minutes. Can you tell us for each of these who made the motion, who seconded and what the motions said?

    No. That was almost 3 months ago.

  62. M Carling wrote:

    Chuck, you’re a member of the National Association of Parliamentarians. You should review our Code of Ethics. You can find it on page 28 of your membership manual. In particular, 4.3 reads “Advise the client on the proper application of the accepted rules of parliamentary procedure notwithstanding the client’s personal desires in the matter.” You just suggested that Henry Robert and Thomas Balch either already have or would have if asked violated our Code of Ethics. In either case, you owe them an apology.

    I didn’t suggest any such thing. Even in that analogy I said “Both letters could be legally sound even though they would be very different.”

    There is nothing wrong with inquiring about how a consultant was contracted. Even assuming no parliamentarian would ever give a more strongly worded opinion for money (which I think is a strong assumption, despite the code of ethics), the person contracting parliamentarians could get 100 opinions and only publicize the one that puts him in the best light.

    It is always possible to self-select favorable opinions. Failing to ignore these realities is living in a fantasy world.

  63. Nope, M, my interpretation is entirely correct and consistent with the Bylaws and Special Rules AS THEY NOW STAND. RRONR cannot, by its own definitions, and by A13, overrule a Special Rule. You ask me to look at a FAQ page. I quoted you directly from RRONR instead. To claim otherwise is to believe in a crazy, upside-down interpretation that a bunch of obscure rules written in a book by non-members designed to be a guideline but is treated as a rule overrides the Bylaws and Rules passed by the members. I doubt many members would agree with that interpretation unless it suited some agenda of theirs.

    Now I hope people can see why placing too much faith in parliamentary procedure as the end-all and be-all for this type of stuff is detrimental and counterproductive.

    Brian, to answer your question, not repealed, but amended. It is my own opinion that Officers and at-large members are responsible to the delegates that elected them. Right now regional representatives can be recalled by their region members. Logically the same should be true for nationwide reps and officers. I see no problem with the LNC recommending such a recall for cause (other than lack of attendance) and putting it to the vote of the delegates, and I see no problem with the LNC declaring a vacancy on its own for simple lack of attendance. (You could suggest a recall for lack of attendance, I suppose, but that seems like a waste of time–no-shows are generally frowned on anyway.) I see a change being along the lines of changing “suspend” to “recommend to the delegates to recall” and then add language in there for the recall process. But the LNC should not be second-guessing the wishes of the delegates when they (the LNC) engage in these types of fishing expeditions. The problem, as ENM pointed out at the top of the thread, and to which I agreed, is that the Bylaws make a huge mistake in treating all suspensions as a step on the road to termination, and that’s a bad assumption to make. A suspension and termination should be treated differently, since they really apply to different levels of transgressions, and such a change there would be a large undertaking and a large improvement. As for such a recall process itself, the record of registered delegates at each convention is easily available since it should be a matter of Party record (it BETTER be!), so informing them of a suggested recall and even sending out ballots to them is not a huge issue–just another smaller-sale mass mailing.

    Then again, I never understood why pure administrative posts such as Treasurer and Secretary were elected instead of hired and responsible to the ED, either.

    The logical followup question of if the delegates on their own could do a recall is a good one, and I would submit the answer to be “yes”, but organizing it from the bottom up would be a challenge. In any case, if a vacancy were to be declared, the Bylaws as they now stand would then apply as normal.

  64. Chuck,

    So you remember there were motions and seconds but not who said what. This is why the minutes are so important. If you can’t remember who made the motions and who seconded and what the motions were how can you be sure there were actual motions that where explicit enough to be in compliance?

  65. Chuck,

    Any chance you don’t remember the executive session motions at all and that you are confusing one of the other motions?

  66. M Carling wrote, “LP bylaws do explicitly authorize the removal of an elected representative.”

    Yes, but not by the LNC, and that is what is being discussed in this thread.

    LP bylaws allow for the LNC to suspend a member. It’s in Article 7, Section 8.

    Pursuant to Article 8, Section 7, however, an LNC Representative may be removed “only” by an act of the affiliate parties in the subject region; or, if there is no procedure for that, by a vote of the state chairs.

    So no, the LNC cannot remove Angela Keaton. They can only suspend her. Just as clearly, even the bylaws differentiate between a suspension and a removal.

    By the way, M Carling, aren’t you the same person who made the allegation in ExSess which started all this? If I recall correctly, you said that Shane Cory made accusations against Angela Keaton (which Shane Cory later denied); and your statement was the catalyst for Ms. Keaton’s actions, and therefore the original catalyst for this entire fiasco.

    Also, is there any truth to the allegation above, that you and Ms. Mattson are vying for Ms. Keaton’s seat on the LNC?

    Inquiring minds want to know about those things, but you seem to be conveniently overlooking comments which might evoke the answers.

    Inquiring minds would also like to know why you believe it is ethical to comment on this issue without disclosing those conflicts of interest. You did bring up the subject of ethics and ethical behavior in this thread multiple times, after all, directed at others. Do you not feel that you should have disclosed your direct involvement in this situation, so readers could place your comments into the proper context and perspective?

  67. What?

    What would M Carling be doing in an Executive Session?

    M Carling is not an LNC member. Only LNC members are bound by confidentiality requirements. Only LNC members can be disciplined or held accountable for breaches of confidentiality. Anyone who isn’t an LNC member can divulged everything that transpires or is discussed. This itself could invalidate the confidentiality provisions of an executive session.

  68. I see. M Carling was a candidate to be on the LNC and came in 8th position where only 5 get elected.

    OK let me try this one. From the meetings minutes.

    “The LNC will go into executive session later to discuss the campaign contract.”

    That is it. No mention that there were non lnc members present. No mention about a motion, no second. Does it say that the lnc will go into an executive session to discuss with non-lnc members a potential campaign contract?

    Does it list the people from out side the LNC members who will participate.

    Every thing discussed within this non “executive session” if a non lnc member were present would be not guaranteed to be confidential. It might as well be public.

    If M. Caling were present at this session or any others, I trust that they signed an Non Disclosure Agreement before the session started. In the absense of such an NDA nothing in that session can be assumed to be confidential.

  69. M Carlin,

    Along the same line, when members are sworn into the LNC do the sign any type of Non-Disclosure Agreement?

  70. Peter: The disciplinary resolution has just been posted on LFV. It’s three pages long, believe it or not. I was expecting a serious set of charges, given the parliamentarian report and all else surrounding this, but laughed so hard when I read it that I squirted Caffeine-Free Pepsi through my nose. Yet the LP wonders why they aren’t taken seriously? Wonder no more.

    M Carling wrote “I have not made any assertions that anyone wrote a check. You have. I have asserted that we don’t know. I only know that I have not written a check.”

    So, I guess that we’re supposed to believe it’s a possibility that the guy wrote the report because he thinks Redpath is cute? LOL

    C’mon, M, let’s get real here. Someone paid him. A man in his position is not going to do that much research, and provide a detailed written opinion, without compensation.

    Mr. Balch was not consulted in his capacity as an attorney. He was consulted in his capacity as a parliamentarian, he very clearly states that it is his opinion as a parliamentarian, his law license is not mentioned at all in the opinion, and the opinion never once even suggests that he is giving his professional opinion as an attorney. It is therefore not relevant whether he is an attorney, since he was not acting in an attorney’s capacity.

  71. M Carling,

    I am very curious. If you were in that Executive Session were you there under a non-disclosure agreement or did you presence in that session make it public?

  72. Chuck Moulton wrote: “I am also interested in knowing how this opinion was contracted. By way of analogy, I would get two very different letters if I went to a lawyer and said “give me an objective assessment of the legal issues involved in situation X” versus “give me your best legal argument that I was right in situation X”. Both letters could be legally sound even though they would be very different.”

    Chuck, you may have meant something different, but that comes across as an implication that Henry Robert and Thomas Balch would have written their opinions differently based on what was said to them. To do so would have been a violation of our Code of Ethics. Since you’ve agreed to our Code of Ethics, you should have known that. Therefore, I believe you owe them an apology.

    Chuck further wrote: “Even assuming no parliamentarian would ever give a more strongly worded opinion for money (which I think is a strong assumption, despite the code of ethics), the person contracting parliamentarians could get 100 opinions and only publicize the one that puts him in the best light.”

    Someone might do that. However, someone doing that would not ask for a joint opinion. Someone doing that would have asked for separate opinions and then used the more favorable one.

    Mike Seebeck wrote: “You ask me to look at a FAQ page.”

    No, I did not. I suggested that you go ask a question in the forum where the experts are. You didn’t like the 3rd professional opinion I gave (agreeing with the first two), so I suggested that you go ask some more experts.

    Anyway, I now see the root of your misunderstanding. You believe that everything in RONR is a Rule of Order. That is not correct. Many things in RONR are Rules of Order (which can be overridden by Special Rules of Order) and many are not (and thus can be overridden only by the bylaws directly).

    Steve Meier wrote: “Chuck,

    So you remember there were motions and seconds but not who said what. This is why the minutes are so important. If you can’t remember who made the motions and who seconded and what the motions were how can you be sure there were actual motions that where explicit enough to be in compliance?”

    First, real minutes do not contain a record of who seconded a motion. Most types of motions should not be recorded in the minutes at all. For those motions which should be recorded in the minutes, for most of them it is not appropriate to record who made the motion. See RONR (10th ed.), pp. 451-454.

    Second, the only time the question of whether or not a motion to enter executive session properly arises is at the time it is made. Any Point of Order on this question must be made promptly. See RONR (10th ed.), pp. 243-244.

    ElfNinosMom wrote: “Yes, but not by the LNC, and that is what is being discussed in this thread.”

    Our bylaws provide one process for removing a member of the LNC. That one process begins with an action by the LNC. The JC may or may not participate in the process later. The removal can become permanent regardless of whether or not the JC participates in the process.

    Obviously, I am not going to comment on anything which may be alleged to have been said in executive session.

    “Also, is there any truth to the allegation above, that you and Ms. Mattson are vying for Ms. Keaton’s seat on the LNC?”

    There is no truth whatsoever to the allegation that I am vying for Ms. Keaton’s seat on the LNC.

    “C’mon, M, let’s get real here. Someone paid him. A man in his position is not going to do that much research, and provide a detailed written opinion, without compensation.”

    It’s likely that somebody paid Messrs. Robert and Balch, but we have no evidence of that and there are other possibilities. We also have no information about _who_ paid, if anyone. You, however, continue to assert that the LNC paid even though there is no reason at all to believe that.

    Steve Meier wrote: “M Carling,

    I am very curious. If you were in that Executive Session were you there under a non-disclosure agreement or did you presence in that session make it public?”

    Your curiosity is not a sufficient reason for me to violate the confidentially requirement of executive session. I’m not going to play the children’s game of 20 questions with you.

  73. M Carling said:

    “Second, the only time the question of whether or not a motion to enter executive session properly arises is at the time it is made. Any Point of Order on this question must be made promptly. See RONR (10th ed.), pp. 243-244.”

    Did you intentionally ignore the exception?

    “The only exceptions to the rule that a point of order must be made at the time of the breach arise in connection with breaches that are of a continuing nature, in which case a point of order can be made at any time during the continuance of the breach. Instances of this kind occur when:

    Is the expectation of confidentiality continuing?

    Clearly it is.

    (a) a main motion has been adopted that conflicts with the bylaws (or constitution) of the organization or assembly, unless the conflict is with a rule in the nature of a rule of order as described on p. 17 lines 23-24, in which case a point of order must be timely.”

    From Page 17 including lines 23-24

    Rules clearly identifiable as in the nature of rules of order that are placed within the the bylaws can also be suspended by a two-thirds vote; but, except for such rules and for clauses that provide for their own suspension, as stated above, bylaws cannot be suspended.

    RONR finishes by stating

    “In all such cases, it is never too late to raise a point of order since the action so taken is null and void.”

    From page 17 RONR

    Adoption or amendment of special rules of order that are separate from the bylaws requires either (a) previous notice (pp. 116-18) and a two-thirds vote or (b) a vote of a majority of the entire membership. After the bylaws of a society have been initially adopted when the organization is formed, the adoption or amendment of special rules of order placed within the bylaws is subject to the procedure for amending the bylaws (see 57).

    Finally,

    The question I asked about having someone in a meeting who hasn’t any obligation of confidentiality makes the information public. It also makes the information of what was discussed in that session public.

  74. Steve Meier, the section you quote shows clearly that the exception does not apply here because entering into executive session did not violate (and could not have violated) the bylaws. If there had been a violation of a special rule of order (which I don’t believe there was), the point of order would have had to have been raised at the time.

    I am, of course, obliged to keep confidential anything I might hear in executive session, so your logic is … puzzling.

  75. M. Carlin,

    In order to make use of the “Executive Session” it would have to be done in accordance of the rules that established the executive session. The LNC guidelines are very straight forward about that. Were these rules amended. That would require notification and a two thirds vote? The continuing expectation of confidentiality would be threatened.

    You are not the LNC so you are not obligated to keep anything confidential unless you specifically signed an NDA or you signed an NDA with your employer and were there on their behalf and they had signed an NDA with the LNC.

    I have also asked the question, have the members of the LNC signed NDAs with the LNC?

    If my company treated confidential information as cavalier as the LNC (and I work in the high tech world and am responsible for a lot of valuable confidential property) our lawyer would tell us that we are a train wreck!

    If these NDAs between your self and the LNC do not exist then the entire board has violated the confidentiality provisions.

  76. No, M, I don’t believe “everything in RONR is a rule of order.” You really need to quit trying to twist things in the wrong direction. I quoted RONR’s own definitions of what a special rule of order IS. Sorry if their plain text bugs you so much. I’m telling YOU that the Judcom rules are Special Rules of Order, period. No more, no less.

    See, that’s the problem here: you get so wrapped up in your technical details you forget the big picture. You also cling so much to the Holy Writ of RRONR that you forget common sense. Given a “3rd professional opinion” or the facts of their own writing, the facts of their own writing win every time over the opinion.

    And a Bylaw can only overrule a power delegated by that Bylaw when the Bylaw explicitly says so (assuming it was properly written).

  77. And Steve is only talking about “confidential” stuff. At higher levels it’s even more severe!🙂

  78. George (Phillies),

    Thank you for that bit about Barr supporting Chambliss in the runoff. I will assume that you have quoted Barr verbatim.

    It is interesting that, only under the pseudo-libertarianism of Barr and many in the Reform Caucus, that “replacing the income tax with a consumption tax” is a libertarian position!

    Folks, this is how “maximizing liberty and minimizing government power” (a LRC and Barr favorite) gets twisted into, having a consumption tax is a libertarian “position”!

    Frankly, I don’t see how “replacing” income tax with any form of consumption tax does any maximizing or minimizing, other than to maximize government power and minimize liberty!

  79. Interesting…. yesterday their were 17 votes for “yes” and today there is only 12. Me thinks there is some monkey business going on with this “poll” don’t you?

  80. NAFB: So yesterday in another thread you claimed that I am Angela Keaton, even though clearly I am not as many people (and easily accessible personal photos) can attest; and today in this thread you claim I’m manipulating the poll results?

    FACT: There is no way for anyone to manipulate the poll results in the manner you are suggesting. It’s a simple poll program built into WordPress. I set it up with questions, picked a skin for it, and haven’t touched it since.

    By the way, the poll results haven’t changed since the last time I looked at them yesterday. It’s still at 20% yes, 75% no, 5% not sure. Had the results been “monkeyed” as you suggest, the percentages would have changed as well. So you are either lying, or simply mistaken. Had it not been for your weird accusation yesterday, I would give you the benefit of the doubt and assume the latter. However, I cannot do that, given your prior false accusations.

    So put away the tin foil hat and stop seeing conspiracies everywhere, when they don’t even exist except in your overactive imagination. You really just make yourself look stupid and crazy with such inane and provably false accusations, and it’s more than a little creepy and weird to boot.

    It’s a damn shame, really. You used to make substantive comments here under your real name, and even though I didn’t always agree with your statements, I still had respect for you. What the hell happened to make you decide it was a good idea to spew insane accusations here under another name? Did you actually think I didn’t know who you were all along, just because I didn’t expose you?

    I can’t decide if I should be annoyed or just saddened, that you would stoop to this level. Either way, cut it out. I do know exactly who you are, and there are many people here who would be stunned to realize it is you posting crap like that.

  81. I think maybe the poll was at 17% yesterday, not 17 votes, if I recall.

  82. This party has waaaaaay too many committees. I thought we were for reducing bureaucracy and redundant officialdom.

  83. Thanks, Peter. So apparently there have been more votes against Keaton since the last time you looked at it, not less votes against her as NABF seems to believe.

  84. I motion to create a committee to investigate the possibility that fewer committees might benefit the LP in some way. We will prepare a 900 page report on the subject which will be returned after proof-reading by subcommittee some time around December, 2028.

  85. I had a logic prof in college you used “Alice in Wonderland” for his class. Quite obvious he was missiing something. He should have used RRONR and the LP by-laws.

    Interesting combination of a typical Libertarian made mess now made even worse.

    MHW

  86. Roberts Rules are Dungeons and Dragons for adults, not a way for serious activists to accomplish anything. It is amusing that the current situation is so complex that National had to bring in the services of a higher-level dungeonmaster to figure things out for them.

  87. On more than on occasion I have suggested that the state parties look at using the Sturgis code, or something simplier than Rob’t Rules.I find it somewhat amusing that Libertarians suggest we do things different when it comes to government, but when it comes to running out own organization can’t seem to get out of the same old rut everyone else is in.

    MW

  88. Matt,

    Before you can form your committee we are going to have to form one committee to put together a specification for what you will be expect to accomplish and a second committee to review the specification.

    All of this will have to conform to the requirements of the project committee which we understand to be waiting for their sub-committee on uniform project standards to publish its report.

    Fear not, all of this is only 27 months behind schedule and has managed to remain within 6.8 billion dollars of the original cost estimations.

    Before we can get to your project we need to complete the study we are working on For Governor Palin, in which we have decided that one bridge to no where is insufficient to guarantee that in advent of a natural disaster that the community it supports (both of them) would still be able to cross that small body of water (without having to use their own boats).

    Sincerely,

    Director of the Department of Redundancy Department

  89. Mike Seebeck: “I’m telling YOU that the Judcom rules are Special Rules of Order, period. No more, no less.”

    Actually, the JC Rules of Appellate Procedure are a mix of Standing Rules and Special Rules of Order. Anyway, the key point is that, as the authors of RONR correctly point out, they are trumped by the requirements of the bylaws.

  90. I am not sure which of the two previous responses is intended to be satirical. I’m hoping both.

  91. They would be if they Bylaws specifically trumped them, but they don’t. That where your argument fails, M.

  92. Our bylaws, by adopting RONR as our parliamentary authority, prohibit business to be conducted by teleconference unless explicitly authorized in the bylaws. RONR (10th ed.), pp. 482-83.

    Here’s another example: Consider an organization having RONR as its parliamentary authority and having four officers: President, Vice-president, Secretary, and Treasurer, and a bylaw provision which reads “In the event of a vacancy in any officer position, the board shall fill the vacancy.” What happens if the office of the President goes vacant? Does the Vice-President automatically become president? Or does the board select the new President? In this case, the Vice-President automatically becomes president. The reason, is that RONR requires such language, if it is to include a vacancy in the office of President (or Chair) to say so explicitly. RONR (10th ed.), p. 557 l. 19-26. This is the reason why Libertarian Party of California bylaws read “The Executive Committee shall appoint new officers, including the Chair, … if vacancies occur ….” Without the words “including the Chair,” the Vice-Chair would automatically take office (which would be a problem since there are two of equal rank).

    In many places, RONR defines what happens if the bylaws are silent. The bylaws can, of course, override any such provision. Special rules of order cannot. A special rule of order trying to prescribe the succession to the office of Chair would be without effect. The same is true of a special rule of order trying to authorize teleconferences. It has no effect because it conflicts with the bylaws (if RONR is the parliamentary authority).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: