Convention Rules

Rules and Procedures for Tenant Convention as Recommended by Convention Organizing Committee

April 22, 2018

Roles of Sponsors/Screeners.

  1. Send announcement that we are looking for candidates.
  2. Invite Berkeley members to the convention.
  3. Send a screener to rate candidates.
  4. Donate to support the election of our selected candidates.
  5. These are the only and complete requests we ask of our Sponsor/Screeners

Approval and Changes to the Rules: The assembled convention shall vote on the rules as the first order of business.  A majority vote of those present at the convention at the time of voting is needed to approve any rules. Waiving of any rules requires approval of 80% of those present and qualified to vote.

Candidate Speeches: Each candidate will have (5) five minutes to address the convention. Candidates can use their time however they choose, speak on any topic, speak for themselves and/or be introduced by one or several people. However, the total presentation including introductory and candidate remarks cannot exceed 5 minutes.

Order of Candidates Speaking: The order of candidates speaking will be determined by random drawing in front of the Convention.

Registration: Attendees will be asked to give their name, full contact info and volunteer to support the campaign. Attendees can register online for speedier service, or at the door. Only Berkeley residents are eligible to voter. All voters will be asked to sign in and pay $10 contribution to the convention and campaign. No one turned away for lack of funds. Anyone in line when the speeches begin will be able to register and get a ballot.

Role of Moderators: The role of the Convention Moderators is to run an even-handed and unbiased candidate selection process. MCs may not introduce or otherwise endorse candidates from the convention floor. However, candidates may name Convention Moderators as endorsers in their speeches and literature.

Voting:  Each voter will be issued ONE numbered ballot when registered. No ballots will be issued after folks in line for registration are cleared. No voting by proxy. Voting will start after the candidate speeches.

Ranked Choice Voting Procedures: We encourage voters to select at least five candidates.  We encourage voters to rank all the candidates. The system we use to vote and to count ballots is designed to pick a slate with the widest base of support. Voters rank all candidates (highest rank 1) in descending order until they have assigned a position to all candidates they have interest in seeing on the slate. You can only rank each candidate once. We discourage bullet voting. Bullet voting  denies support to the other slate members.

Tallying for Ranked Choice Voting:

  1. Everyone’s votes for their top five candidates are totaled. The candidate with the lowest number of top-five votes is eliminated. Ballots with that candidate among their top five ranked positions have their sixth-ranked candidates allotted that eliminated vote.
  2. The candidate with the lowest number of votes after the second-round distribution is then eliminated, and the ballots that included that candidate in their (remaining) top five rankings are redistributed.
  3. The process is continued until all but five candidates are eliminated.
  4. If the counting is not completed by the time the venue closes the ballots will be carried to the Grassroots House to complete the count, accompanied by anyone who wishes to witness the process.

Commitment to the Slate Chosen by Convention: All candidates will be asked to sign a pledge to not run against or endorse against the slate selected by the Convention. Potential candidates who have turned in their signed pledges to anyone on the organizing committee by one week before the convention will have their names printed on the ballot.

Write-in candidates will be allowed. Their names will be posted at the front of the room, noting whether or not they have signed the pledge, by the start of the voting. Any candidate nominated from the floor and not present at the convention but who is selected for the slate must agree to run with and endorse the entire slate within 48 hrs. Otherwise the next (last eliminated) candidate will be chosen.

Slates: In that the sponsoring organizations are committed to an open  democratic process, whereby the membership selects the best candidates through the convention process, we oppose both the creation of a slate before the convention, and the lobbying of voters immediately outside the convention hall, which slows down registration.  The Convention voters will select the slate. While candidates may endorse other candidates, we should wait for the voting for the “Slate” to be selected. Candidates will be able to table inside the hall, after attendee get through the registration table.

Activities that folks who have no money for registration can do:

  1. Breakdown the room after event
  2. Social media: share and comment on Facebook posts and other media
  3. Call and encourage friends to register to vote, donate and support the slate
  4. Walk precincts