and ask them to co-sponsor the
Resolution to Restore the Voice of the Grassroots
RNC Boston Summer Meeting Update:
I just sent an email to all 168 Members of the RNC, asking them to co-sponsor perhaps the most important Resolution in the history of the RNC, the “Resolution to Restore the Voice of the Grassroots”. Contact your RNC members for your state and respectfully ask them to co-sponsor this Resolution: It reads as follows:
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The following resolution, related to the rule changes that took place at the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida is hereby presented for consideration and co-sponsorship.
The resolution addresses grievances that an incorrect call was made by the chair over the voice vote on the floor of the 2012 Republican National Convention Tampa, Florida, and the loud and numerous calls for division and points of order that followed and were ignored. This reversion is necessary in order to return to the integrity for which the Republican National Committee and the Republican Party itself were once known.
In case you’ve forgotten, this video, which is shorter than 5 minutes, should serve as a reminder as to why I continue to present this argument and why the rank and file of the Republican Party won’t let this issue rest.
Now, I anticipate that there will be a few among us who will argue that my Resolution is without merit or out of order, so let me take a moment to present to you what I believe you may hear over the next few days, along with my counter-arguments:
First, some may argue that there is no possible way to revert back to the 2008 rules, namely via a Resolution – in other words, “Resolutions regarding Rules don’t mix”. To that point, I present the following counter-arguments:
The current 2012 Rules were adopted via a Resolution read out loud by Gov. Sununu and then approved (gaveled down) by Speaker Boehner. Therefore one could say that a Resolution got us into this mess and this Resolution will get us out of of it.
The Resolution related to RNC Rules 1-11 and 13-25 was passed at the RNC Winter meeting in Charlotte set the stage for a special Rules Committee meeting in Los Angeles.
Therefore, there is precedence. Resolutions related to Rules do mix, given the right circumstances.
Second, some may argue that by reverting to the 2008 Rules via a Resolution, the RNC will set a very dangerous precedent as any Rule or for that manner, “anything” could be changed or overturned by a Resolution. To that I strongly disagree and present the following counter-arguments:
When is the last time a Resolution was brought to the entire body of the RNC for a vote to overturn anything?
Why are we at a point where this seems to be the only option left to get our rules back to where they need to be?
I truly believe that any Resolution that makes it to the entire 168 member body for a vote will either be voted up or down, based upon its merits. If a Resolution has no merit, then it will surely fail and be struck down.
However, that being the case, if my Resolution is so out of order and without merit, then why should anyone worry about its successful passage?
Third, some may argue that at the Tampa Convention, the “Nays” were simply people in the stands yelling as well, with the “Ayes” being the majority voice on the floor. To that argument, I respond with the strongest argument as to what should have happened but did not as the Rules of the House and the National Convention were clearly violated:
From the above video and testimonials from many people on the convention floor, the vote was too close to call.
Furthermore, following the ordering of the previous question on adopting the RNC Rules Committee Report, delegates rose to claim the time to speak in opposition to the Report, pursuant to Rule 19(1)(a), yet were not recognized to speak.
Furthermore, House Rule 19(1)(a), clearly states, “Whenever the previous question has been ordered on an otherwise debatable question on which there has been no debate, it shall be in order to debate that question for 40 minutes, equally divided and controlled by a proponent of the question and an opponent,” established that 40 minutes of debate from the body of the National Delegation to the RNC was required prior to the adoption of the 2012 Rules
The actions of the convention chair violated the Rules of the House and the Rules of the National Convention.
Fourth, some might argue that the Standing Committee on Rules is the only place to change the Rules, not through the Standing Committee on Resolutions. Again, I present the counter-arguments:
Rules amendments are only available to certain specified rules (1-11, 13-25) through Rule 12 and not the entire set of Rules that need to go back to 2008.
This Resolution isn’t about nit-picking problems within the Rules themselves, but rather the process itself, which the Standing Committee on Rules itself cannot address.
Fifth, another argument you may hear is, “well how are the 2008 rules better than the 2012 rules?” To this I say the following:
Again, this is not about nitpicking the rules but rather maintaining the integrity of the process.
No one argues that the 2008 Rules were passed illegitimately before the body of delegates.
However, with regards to the 2012 Rules, there is clearly a point of division over the legitimacy of their passage to the point that our party could be permanently damaged if the grievance is not addressed.
Finally, some might argue that, “we don’t want to lose all of the work of the rules committee & the good changes made.” To that, I say with all due respect:
There is documentation of all changes & plenty of time to suggest amending the rules with those changes.
The work is not lost, but there is no imminent need for any of the changes, the party operated just fine under the old version of the rules.
We need to make sure the folks on the ground know that their voice is heard on the national level & the party operates with integrity.
In the end, this is going to be far more beneficial to the future of the party than keeping some rule changes that can always be brought back up in the future.
Hence, due to the way these Rules were adopted, the RNC’s attempt to manufacture unity and respect has become impossible and has resulted in further division and dissension within the Party, sacrificing our integrity, and putting that sacrifice on display to all the world to see.
This action, and others like it, have disenfranchised untold Republicans who gave and continue to give of their time, money, and allegiance to our Party. It is not just immoral, but monumentally arrogant to expect rank and file Republicans to work precincts and maintain unquestioning loyalty to the party just to have the rules manipulated at the end of a four-year effort.
The duty to ensure integrity within our party falls to every one of our members, and it is with great hope that we ask that that fact and the stated goals and mission of our Party be kept in mind. And it is in that spirit that we demand that the leadership of the RNC adhere to, promote, and act in accordance with the principles set out in the Preamble and other foundational documents.
I therefore present this Resolution, “The Resolution to Restore the Voice of the Grassroots” for your consideration and co-sponsorship. Together, by supporting this Resolution, we can show the Republican base that we have taken the first serious step towards making a “good faith effort” to ensure these rules are where they belong.
Please feel free to contact me anytime to discuss.
National Committeeman, Maine Republican Party
RESOLUTION TO RESTORE THE VOICE OF THE GRASSROOTS
Whereas, RNC Rule 30 directs that the Rules of the House of Representatives of the United States shall be the guiding rules of the Republican National Convention and;
Whereas, House Rule 19(1)(a), which states, “Whenever the previous question has been ordered on an otherwise debatable question on which there has been no debate, it shall be in order to debate that question for 40 minutes, equally divided and controlled by a proponent of the question and an opponent,” established that 40 minutes of debate from the body of the National Delegation to the RNC was required prior to the adoption of the 2012 Rules and;
Whereas, following the ordering of the previous question, on adopting the RNC Rules Committee Report, delegates rose to claim the time to speak in opposition to the Report, pursuant to Rule 19(1)(a), yet the delegates were not recognized to speak and;
Whereas, the 40 minutes of debate established under Rule 19(1)(a) was not afforded to the delegates and;
Whereas, Rule 19 of the United States House of Representatives further asserts, “2(a) After the previous question has been ordered on passage or adoption of a measure, or pending a motion to that end, it shall be in order to move that the House recommit (or commit, as the case may be) the measure, with or without instructions, to a standing or select committee. For such a motion to recommit, the Speaker shall give preference in recognition to a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner who is opposed to the measure. (b)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (c), a motion that the House recommit a bill or joint resolution on which the previous question has been ordered to passage shall be debatable for 10 minutes equally divided between the proponent and an opponent…. (c) On demand of the floor manager for the majority, it shall be in order to debate the motion for one hour equally divided and controlled by the proponent and an opponent.” and;
Whereas, having been denied the opportunity to speak in opposition, delegates rose to move that the Report of the Committee on Rules and Order of Business be referred back to the Committee, with instructions, and that the motion be debated for 10 minutes pursuant to Rule 19(2)(a). These delegates were not recognized. Delegates continued to assert points of order seeking recognition for the above purposes throughout the presentation of the Report of the Committee on Rules and Order of Business and continued to be denied recognition and;
Whereas, the actions of the convention chair violated the Rules of the House and the Rules of the National Convention and;
Whereas, the passage of the 2012 Rules of the Republican Party was executed without having followed the proper procedure and;
Whereas, remedial action is necessary in order to maintain grassroots faith in Republican party adherence to the rules and recognition of the procedural process and;
Therefore, be it resolved that the Republican National Committee rejects the legitimacy of the method of passage of the 2012 Rules of the Republican Party and;
Be it further resolved that the Republican National Committee shall revert to operation under the Rules adopted by the 2008 Republican National Convention.
Special thanks to Bryan Daugherty for the heads up on this effort via the group on facebook!