SB 121-10: Save the Senate Amendment - Failed

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Senator & Ambassador Dwarven Dragon:
Quote from: Attorney General & PPT Dwarven Dragon on June 02, 2024, 08:25:54 PM

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Save the Senate Amendment

Modify Article III, Section 1 of the Constitution as follows:

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3. The Senate shall consist of eighteentwelve Senators; nine elected at large and one elected for each region and each subregion. However, this section shall not be construed to prevent any duly elected senator from completing any term to which they have been elected, with the full rights, powers, and privileges of said office.
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Modify Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution as follows:


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1. The manner of election for at-large Senators shall be as follows:
i. The nine six at-large Senators shall be elected for a term of two months by the eligible voters of the Republic according to a method of proportional representation prescribed by the Senate. Elections for the seats shall be held in the months of February, April, June, August, October, and December.
ii. If no other method of proportional representation is prescribed by law, at-large Senate elections shall operate on single transferable vote.
iii. At-large Senate vacancies shall be filled through appointment by the executive of the former Senatorís Party; but should a vacancy occur as the result of the death, expulsion, or resignation of an at-large Senator not being a member of a major Party, then a special election shall be held within twenty days of the vacancy to choose a replacement to serve the remainder of the existing term. The seats of the members elected 7th, 8th, and 9th according to the June 2024 Election Results shall not be filled if they become vacant. Ties shall be broken according to most first preferences, then most second preferences, and so on. In the case of such a vacancy, such a seat will not be relevant to the question of passage or quorum on any matter before the Senate.

The manner of selection for regional Senators shall be as follows:
i. Each region shall elect a Senator for a term of four months by popular election of the regionís residents administered by the regional government in a manner prescribed by the legislature thereof. Regional Senate elections shall be held in the months of February, June, and October.
ii. Regional Senate vacancies occurring more than thirty days prior to the end of the term shall be filled by special election of the regionís residents administered by the regional government within twenty days of the vacancy.
iii. Regional Senate vacancies occurring within thirty days of the end of the term, as well as the interim between a vacancy and a prescribed special election, may be filled in accordance with the laws of the region in question; should no such law exist then the regionís executive shall have the power to make such an appointment. No remaining or future regional senate vacancy shall be filled. In the case of such a vacancy, such a seat will not be relevant to the question of passage or quorum on any matter before the Senate.
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Modify Article V, Section 1 of the Constitution as follows:

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4. All justices of the Supreme Court shall immediately resign and must either be re-confirmed by the relevant authority, or be replaced by a new justice.





Quote from: Amendment Explanation

In accordance with declining activity in the game, this will reduce the size of the Senate to 12 seats, six at large and one from each subregion. It is implemented gradually to avoid holding elections to non-existent seats and provide time for affected senators to find their next role in the game. It also resets the Supreme Court membership to ensure the return of an active Supreme Court.


Quote from: Amendment Implementation

The changes to Article III, Section 1 shall take effect immediately. The changes to Article III, Section 2 shall take effect on July 6th, 2024. The changes to Article V shall take effect on August 1st, 2024.





Sponsor: Dwarven Dragon
Occupying: Slot 4

Senator & Ambassador Dwarven Dragon:
It pains me to have to even propose this, but I believe we are confronting a crisis as a game. The latest federal election thread obtained just 77 replies. Fewer than a dozen bills have been introduced during this session of the senate, and the same was true for the prior session. Several senate seats are or recently have been filled by 'warm bodies' who contribute little or nothing aside from maybe casting a vote if pm'ed aggressively enough. Healthy debate of legislation on the floor has almost completely disappeared. We need a more active, responsive, and full-time senate, and I believe the way to do this is to reduce its size to 12, a number that while a large decrease, reflects the reduction of activity in the game and allows us to still maintain balance between the regions and the national popular vote.

The proposed model is a reduction by eliminating three at-large seats and the regional at-large seats. The reduction would take place gradually as vacancies exist or terms expire and would not affect the June 2024 Elections or the current session of the senate. This would prevent anyone from having to be in the position to vote to lose their job 'tomorrow' or in an election to a seat that won't actually exist. It would also allow everyone time to find their next desired role, if any, in the game if this change keeps them from being in the Senate.

This specific reduction:

--- Protects Local Representation: By maintaining the subregions, the new Senate will still have a member directly responsible to each subsection of Atlasia.
--- Protects Small Parties and Independents: The only seat held by the Democratic Alliance, the only seat held by Hui Liliʻuokalani, and the only seat held by an Independent would be maintained.
--- Maintains Balance between the regions and the National Popular Vote: Six seats elected nationally, Six seats elected locally.
---- Will Increase Electoral Competitiveness: Rather than everyone on the ballot being elected and parties scrambling to fill the last couple of seats with write-in candidates, a reduced number of seats will result in more contested elections that people will actually feel excited about voting in.
--- Is a Clean Constitutional Change: Subregional seats are far more embedded in our Constitution then the regional at-large seats are, making the regional at-large seats easily eliminated without requiring larger structural changes and debates.

To avoid a repeat of the anemic turnout seen with the Sequoyah Statehood Amendment, my intention is to oversee a lengthy debate of this amendment and have it voted on such that it will go to the people of each region concurrent with the Presidential Election. If there is better language than what I have proposed that would receive more support, I am open to that. But I believe the 18 member model no longer reflects where the game is. It is a model that may work when there is an active, engaging crisis or when one literally pours their soul into it, but it is not conducive to the current day to day operation of the game. If we want to keep this game alive for the future, then a reduction to the size of the senate must be implemented.

GM Team Member and Senator WB:
though I do admit I still have some qualms regarding the issue of small parties getting representation nationally, in the end this seems like a necessary change considering the issues we've seen. It should be a temporary thing until the game returns to higher activity levels, but until then, this is probably better than the barely held together system we have now.

Senator & Ambassador Dwarven Dragon:
Going to propose these separately to allow people to offer differences in opinion if necessary:

Amendment A (Legislative Reset):

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Modify Article V, Section 3 of the Constitution as follows:

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3. Effective August 1, 2024, All Legislation passed before August 1, 2023 is hereby declared null and void.




Amendment B (SCOA Membership Reset):

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Modify Article V, Section 1 of the Constitution as follows:

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4. Effective August 1, 2024, all justices of the Supreme Court shall immediately resign and must either be re-confirmed by the relevant authority, or be replaced by a new justice.






GM Team Member and Senator WB:
objecting to A because 1) it's arbitrary to call it all unconstitutional, null and void would make more sense for a reset, and 2) because I'm not certain about the idea personally.

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