Monday, January 22, 2007

Who gets to go?

The Green National Committee has spent many hours writing back and forth, and now the Delegate Allocation Committee has come up with a proposal on how many delegates each state will get to send to the national conventions. It has not been voted on yet, and is hiding behind the "Read more!" link. If you have an opinion about this, now is the time to let your opinion be known.

PROPOSAL FROM THE GPUS DELEGATE APPORTIONMENT COMMITTEE TO THE NATIONAL COMMITTEE OF THE GPUS

Updated Jan 22, 2007

Pursuant to GPUS proposal 175, which created the Delegate Apportionment Committee (DAC), and proposal 208, which elected the DAC, the members of the DAC hereby forward to the National Committee of the GPUS the following proposal as the results of our deliberations for your approval.

A new Delegate Apportionment Committee shall be elected in 2010 to revisit issues of proportionality in light of experience with this formula and to make a new proposal for delegate apportionment to the National Committee in 2011.

ALLOCATION OF DELEGATES TO THE NATIONAL COMMITTEE OF THE GREEN PARTY

ARTICLE I. RECALCULATION ­ This apportionment will be recalculated every two years, in the odd numbered year following the national election year by the Apportionment Standing Committee (see Article VII). This committee shall start meeting between election day in the even numbered year and the following January 31, shall put out a call to state parties within two weeks requesting information necessary for the apportionment calculation, and will present the results of its recalculation to the National Committee by the end of the following May. The results of each apportionment recalculation must be accepted by the National Committee by a two thirds vote, and shall become effective at the conclusion of the vote.

ARTICLE II. DELEGATES AND VOTES ­ Each delegate seat counts for one vote. State parties may decide for themselves how any allowed proxy votes should be cast. Delegate votes may also be split, in denominations of half votes, in order to more accurately represent the opinions of each state¹s membership.

To ease the transition to the new apportionment, for a period of one year following the implementation of the new apportionment, extra votes will be allowed the following restrictions. Delegations which are unable to fill all their delegate seats may carry up to one extra vote per seated delegate: 1) a temporary vacancy due to a resignation, removal, illness, or death; or 2) the chair(s) or coordinator(s) of the delegation provide evidence to the GPUS Secretary that a good faith effort was made to recruit delegates that directly reached a member pool at least 50 times greater than the number of unfilled seats. One extra vote will be allowed per 50 members directly reached, up to the number of unfilled seats. Delegations may cast these
votes by consulting their constituent body or consulting a specific delegate whose proxy is held. Delegations with at least 4 voting members also have the option of casting the extra votes proportionally to the votes of the delegation as a whole. After this one-year period, proxies will only be allowed for in-person meetings.

Accredited caucuses will have one vote.

ARTICLE III. SIZE OF THE NATIONAL COMMITTEE ­ The National Committee shall consist of 200 ±2 delegates when all accredited state parties and caucuses are included. Should any new state party or caucus become accredited after an apportionment, the NC will be expanded by the number of delegates allotted to the newly entering member party or caucus. The next reapportionment will return the size of the NC to as close to 200 as the mathematics of the formula allows, within ± 2.


ARTICLE IV. MINIMUM VOTE ­ All accredited state parties are entitled to a minimum of two votes and two delegates. However, a state party may voluntarily choose to have fewer than two votes or delegates if having two is a burden, and the Green Party of the U.S. may offer special assistance to state parties who choose to have only one vote, including but not limited to: special consideration for support of candidates by the Coordinated Campaign Committee, free bundles of the Green Pages newspaper and discounts or scholarships for delegates or observers attending national meetings.

ARTICLE V. PROPORTIONAL ALLOCATION METHOD ­ Each state party shall have two months from the Apportionment Committee¹s call for information to submit the information needed to calculate their portion of seats. After receiving necessary data from each state party, the Apportionment Standing Committee will determine the proportion of delegates allocated to each state party using four measures of relative Green Party strength. These measures are based on estimating each state party¹s active contribution to the Green Party in terms of campaign strength, in-state voting strength, presidential voting strength, and counts of people.

Within most of these categories, there are multiple methods of determining the strength of a state party relative to parties in other states. The state may choose which method in each category to use. If the state does not choose, the Apportionment Standing Committee will use the method in each category that gives each state party its highest possible score. The final score is given in terms of a percentage of the National Committee.

The formula for calculating the number of delegates allocated to a given state party is as follows:

1. Using the choices of the state party, calculate the score in each of the four categories. Normalize each category so that the total percentage is 100%.

2. Add up these scores and divide by 4 to get an average score. This is the percentage of the delegation designated to the state.

3. If the percentage is less than the minimum percentage threshold of delegates allocated to each state, then two delegates will be allocated to that state party. The minimum percentage threshold is {2 /[200 - (number of accredited caucuses)]} x 100%.

4. If the percentage is greater than the minimum threshold, that is the initial percentage of delegates allocated to the state party.

Once the initial percentages are calculated for all accredited parties, these values must be normalized to assure that the total percent of delegates equals 100%. The formula for normalizing the initial percentages is as follows:

5. Set all states with initial percentage scores below the minimum threshold value equal to the minimum threshold.

6. Add up the initial percentage scores of all states and divide each state¹s initial percentage by this total.

7. Repeat steps 5. and 6. until the total the total percentage of delegates allotted to all states (200 ­ number of accredited caucuses) equals approximately 100% (will usually take 3 to 4 iterations), The number of delegates allocated to each state is calculated by multiplying the normalized percentage of each state by [200 - (number of accredited caucuses)] and rounding off to the nearest integer.

8. The total number of delegates allowed for a single state shall be capped at 21% of the target NC size (42 delegates).

9. The threshold for rounding may need to be adjusted in order to bring the total number of delegates within the range of ±2 of the target number.

ARTICLE VI. ALLOCATION MEASURES

The Apportionment Standing Committee will seek submissions of data from state Green Party organizations according to the following criteria:

1. Membership
The number of Green Party members in the state party as close as possible to the date of the start of the work of the committee. (This will then be calculated as a percentage of the total number of Green Party members in the United States.)

Green Party membership is defined as follows:
· In states where the Green Party can register voters, Green Party membership is defined as the number of voters that are registered in the Green Party. Green Party membership in these states may also include those who are ineligible to vote but are extended formal membership by the state party.

· In states without Green Party voter registration , Green Party membership is defined as the number of people who have filled the qualifications for membership in that state party, have signed up to be Green Party members, are included in the database of current members in that state party. Signers of ballot access petitions may be considered members of the Green Party if the signers willingly join the Green Party simultaneously or if signing the petition constitutes acceptance of membership in the Green Party according to state law. Calculations and email lists may not be
substituted for membership rolls.

Solely for the purposes of standardizing this apportionment measure between states, after voting in a primary of another political party, Green Party members should re-affirm their Green Party membership with their state party. This may be handled on the honor system and does not require a significant extra administrative burden for the state party. The state party is free to count its own membership however it wants for other purposes; this restriction is solely for reporting this particular measure to the Apportionment Committee in a manner that makes the numbers as comparable as
possible.

If state legal action results in a state Green party having its members legally invalidated, they may continue to use the same membership count until the next apportionment cycle.

NOTE: For the purposes of #2, Campaign Strength, and #3, State Voting Strength, ³Green Party Office Holders² and ³Green Party Candidates² must be Green Party members. They may not also be members of the Republican or Democratic Party or running solely on another political party¹s ballot line. For State Voting Strength, if a candidate is listed on more than one party¹s ballot line, only the votes for the Green Party ballot line can be counted.


2. Campaign Strength
A. The number of Green Party Office Holders in your state as a percentage of the total number of Green Party Office Holders in all affiliated state parties. Green Party office holders are defined as members of the Green Party who are elected to public office in elections (not including internal party offices such as central committees). If they were elected in an election where less that 300 ballots were cast, they will count half.

B. The number of local and statewide Green Party Candidates that ran for office in your state during the last four-year election cycle as a percentage of the total number of local and statewide Green Party Candidates that ran for office in the U.S. in all affiliated state parties during the same period. Local or statewide Green Party Candidates are defined as Green Party members who run and appear on the ballot in public elections. If they ran in an election where fewer than 300 ballots were cast, they will count half.

C. The percentage of the total U.S. population that resides in your state, multiplied by 0.5. (This measure is designed to compensate for overly restrictive ballot access laws in some states. If used here, population may not be used in #3 , State Voting Strength.)


3. State Voting Strength
A. The number of votes cast for Green Party Candidates in your state during the last four-year election cycle as a percentage of the total number of votes cast for Green Party Candidates in the U.S during the same time.

B. The highest number of votes received by a single Green Party Candidate in your state during the last four-year election cycle as a percentage of the total number of Green Party votes received by the highest vote getter in each state in the U.S. during the same time.

C. The highest vote percentage received by a Green Party candidate in your state during the last four years in a statewide partisan election for Governor, Lt. Governor or U.S. Senate (or Mayor or Chair of the City Council for the District of Columbia) that is contested by both major political parties, weighted against the same data from every affiliated state Green Party. Because this measure, unlike all the others, is a percentage of a percentage, its effect shall be capped at a maximum of 2 extra delegates.

D. The percentage of the total U.S. population that resides in your state, multiplied by 0.5. (This measure is designed to compensate for overly restrictive ballot access laws in some states. If used here, population may not be used in #2 , Campaign Strength.)

4. Presidential Voting Strength
A. The number of votes cast for Green Party presidential nominee in your state in the November 2000 general election as a percentage of the number of votes cast for the same candidate nationwide.

B. The number of votes cast for Green Party presidential nominee in your state in the November 2004 general election as a percentage of the number of votes cast for the same candidate nationwide.

ARTICLE VII. RESOLUTION TO FORM AN APPORTIONMENT STANDING COMMITTEE
The GPUS hereby creates the Apportionment Standing Committee to make decisions regarding the implementation of the above formula. This committee will consult with state parties on state party numbers and apply the criteria stated in this proposal, as interpreted by the committee.

The structure of the Apportionment Standing Committee will be a volunteer committee following the structures and practices laid out in the GPUS bylaws and rules and procedures and consisting of up to 3 members per state.

Members of the committee must be Green Party members who have permission from their state party to serve. State parties are required to vet candidates for the knowledge and skill set needed for apportionment calculations, including the necessary mathematical understanding and spreadsheet skills.

The tasks laid out for the committee include the following:

1. Designing spreadsheets that perform the calculations of the formulas described above for delegate apportionment.

2. Soliciting the state parties to send the relevant data so that apportionment can be undertaken with the most complete data. (If a state party does not submit numbers in a timely fashion, the committee is empowered to use publicly available data or to allocate the delegate minimum to that state party until the next apportionment.)

3. Applying the criteria of this proposal to the data, plugging the most accurate available numbers into the formula, and completing the computations.

4. Developing a formal challenge process for data submitted by a state party or to the data entry or computational analysis, reviewing any such challenges, and making the final decision regarding the numbers to be used.

5. Reporting the results of apportionment to the NC in a timely fashion and presenting the proposal to approve the completed computations.


[1] The DAC recommends that the GPUS create an official roll of Green Party members in states without Green Party registration over the next two years.






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Comments:
"8. The total number of delegates allowed for a single state shall be capped at 21% of the target NC size (42 delegates)."

It may help to translate this rule: "8. The total number of delegates allowed for California shall be capped at 21% of the target NC size (42 delegates)." No other state approaches 20%, under the specified formula. The report of DAC to the NC doesn't mention the cap, let alone justify it.
 
Delegate should be apportion solely based on the number of greens in each state. No cacuses. I'm fine with states without party registration figuring out their numbers themselves, but these should be people with
addresses, not just some count of green votes in an election. If a state does not
have enough greens to have a delegate, that
is fine. They are represented on the NC but
they can not participate in a convention without bringing unfairness to states that
do have enough greens. Fractional voting is
OK if a state wants to send a delegate with 0.05 votes.

Much better than this would be a one person one ballot nationwide IRV primary
leaving all of these calculations in the dustbin.
 
Gregg,

This proposal is for the delegates to the National Committee, not the convention. While it will probably heavily influence the convention formula, it is not the same.
 
Thanks Lou for clearing that up.
 
I was mistaken as well. I read delegate rather than representative
and thought convention. I feel that proportional representation
is unimportant under a strict consensus process, but since the NC
proceeds by votes, proportional representation should be approached
if possible. The role of caucuses is a little problematic though.
Making consensus the mode of operation of the NC would solve these
issues and lead to more robust results.
 
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