Congressional Rules of Order and Rules of Decorum
The eCanadian Congressional Rules of Order
Article I. The Speaker
Section 1. How the Speaker is Chosen. (a) The Speaker shall be chosen in an election following the procedures described in the eCanadian constitution
Section 2. Powers of the Speaker.
(a) The Speaker, and any other member, may bring topics up at any time to Congress.
(b) The Speaker shall preside over Congress business and activity.
© The Speaker shall formulate Rules of Decorum to govern behavior Congress subject to a majority ratification. The Speaker may call any member of the Congress to order for violating these Rules.
(d) The Speaker may rule an action of a member of Congress as "dilatory". If an action is ruled dilatory, it is ignored and treated as if it never happened. The speaker may only rule an action dilatory if the action was done for no purpose other than to cause delay. Examples of dilatory actions include objecting to unanimous consent for no purpose other than opposition to the practice of unanimous consent or proposing an amendment to a topic that would render it absurd or meaningless.
(e) If a member breaks the rules of decorum or commits an infamous act on Congress floor, the Speaker may name that member. If a member is named, he shall be banned from Congress floor for up to one week. A naming shall be treated as a ruling for purposes of the motion to overturn a ruling of the Speaker.
(f) The Speaker may archive any topic in which there has been no new messages in 72 hours and in which no motion to call the question has been seconded.
(g) The Speaker also has any powers ascribed to them under the Constitution.
Section 3. Deputy.
(a) The Speaker may appoint a Deputy at any time, who shall serve at the fancy of the Speaker.
Section 4. Removal
(a) The Speaker may be removed by any means found in the Constitution up to and including: (i) an unannounced 72 hour absence from the eCanada forums (ii) a vote of non-confidence, presided over by the Deputy Speaker, of 66% of Congress. (iii) An in-game ban or resignation that renders the Speaker no longer a member of Congress (iv) A formal note of resignation by the Speaker
(b) Upon the removal of the Speaker, a new nomination period of 24 hours, then vote of 24 hours for a new Speaker should be held immediately by the Deputy Speaker. During the duration of the nomination procedure and the voting procedure the Deputy Speaker shall take the Speaker's place until such a time where a new Speaker has been assigned to the House of Congress.
Article II - Debates
Section 1. Debate Awareness (a) The Speaker of Congress or his deputy has the duty to alert those other than elected members of congress whose collaboration to a discussion is required in Open Door Congress and Closed Door Congress equally. (i) On the same note, topic creators can and should state in their post who they would like to take part in the discussion and who is required to share an opinion in the discussion.
Section 2. Length of Debate on a Topic. (a) The length of a debate on any measure shall at least 24 hours but there is no maximum length.
Section 3. Stopping Debate. (a) Debate shall last until one of the following occurs: (i) The debate creator requests closure of the topic without resolution. (ii) The Speaker announces a vote on the topic. (iii) There is a successful motion to call the question on the topic. (iv) There is a successful motion to divide the question and topic is split into a new thread for each division.
(b) The Speaker may extend the length of a debate at his fancy, but may not shorten the length of a debate.
© During a debate, any member of Congress may move to call the question. A successful motion to call the question ends debate immediately upon passing, even if the Speaker objects. The motion requires a simple majority to pass.
Section 4. Speaking During Debate. (a) Any member of Congress may speak an unlimited number of times during debate.
Section 5. Unanimous Consent. (a) Anything that requires a debate can be passed by unanimous consent. Any member of Congress may request unanimous consent on a measure; once such a request is made, the measure shall pass unless another member of Congress posts an objection to UC within either 24 hours of the request.
Section 6. Amendments and Motions. (a) During a debate, any member of Congress may make a motion to amend the measure being debated. A motion to amend must be debated, and requires a simple majority. Amendments may also be amended, but amendments to amendments may not be amended. Debate on the measure being amended is suspended during the resolution of a motion to amend.
(b) Amendments must be germane to the purpose of the measure to be amended. (c) An amendment that has the approval of the original author of the topic is to be considered friendly and thus, with the consent of the Speaker, is passed as if by unanimous consent. (d) An amendment that does not have the approval of the original author is considered hostile and thus must be voted on.
(c) Motions to call the question, to divide the question, and to suspend the rules do not require debate and can immediately be voted upon. Motions of non-confidence may bypass the 24 hour debate time if the current president has been convicted of a crime by the Supreme Court of Canada, if they have taken over the government of eCanada and/or they have taken over the military and are using it for nefarious purposes. All other motion of non-confidence will have to go through the 24-hour debate time.
Article III. Voting
Section 1. Length of a non in-game Vote. (a) The length of a vote shall be set by the Speaker. No vote will be shorter than 48 hours except those on motions and amendments. Votes on motions and amendments shall last not less than 24 hours.
Section 2. Valid Votes. (a) Any of the following are valid votes: (i) Valid in favor of approving a measure: AYE YEA YES OUI
(ii) Valid in favor of not approving a measure: NAY NO NON
iii) Valid in favour of an option mentioned in the specific poll: The name of the option
(b) While it is expected that members will want to vote on all matters, no member can be compelled to vote, and not voting shall not be tallied toward the outcome of a vote. Members wishing to indicate their presence without voting may respond by stating Abstain or Present or Je m'abstiens.
Section 3. Vote Tallying. (a) The Speaker shall tally any vote after the conclusion of the vote and announce the results in the voting thread. (B)A member has the right to change her/his vote until the conclusion of voting, so long as he/she does so by adding a new reply to the vote thread explicitly stating the change of vote.
Section 4 - Means to Vote
In order for a vote to be considered valid
a) The Speaker may, at their discretion, open a poll for voting either by i) Opening a polling thread, where members of Congress may register their vote by replying to the polling thread ii) Opening a polling thread, where members of Congress may register their vote by utilizing the forum polling mechanic
© A member's right to vote on a question shall not be arbitrarily limited nor denied.
(D) Unless otherwise stated, all motions, topics, and amendments require 50% + 1 votes in favour to pass.
Article IV. Amending, Suspending, and Interpreting the Rules.
Section 1. Amending the Rules. (a) Any provision of the Rules of Order may be amended by a 2/3rds vote of Congress.
Section 2. Suspending the Rules. (a) Congress may break any portion of the Rules of Order if it passes a motion to suspend the rules. A motion to suspend the rules must specify a particular act which is prohibited by the Rules of Order, and which Congress will be allowed to do if the motion passes. A motion to suspend the rules requires a two-thirds majority.
Section 3. Interpreting the Rules. (a) The Speaker of Congress shall be the ultimate interpreter of the Rules of Order, limited only by the motion to overturn the ruling of the Speaker. Any member may ask the Speaker to interpret the Rules of Order by addressing a Point of Order to the Speaker.
(b) Any ruling or interpretation of the Speaker may be overturned by a motion to overturn the ruling of the Speaker, which requires a simple majority.
Rules of Decorum
- note, the Rules of Decorum replace the Congressional Code of Conduct
When a procedural issue is not covered by the Rules of Order, the latest edition of Robert's Rules of Order will apply.
- No Deputy Speaker may bring legislation to the Floor unless the Speaker is on LOA or under direct instructions by the Speaker.
- Confine remarks to the merits of the pending question. - Do not discuss any other motion, or anything outside of the pending question. Unless permitted by the rules, if Congress is considering a subsidiary or incidental motion, confine remarks to that motion and not the main question.
- Persons with the government ministers mask, Congressional delegates mask, Congress Member Mask, Prime Minister Mask, Global Moderator Mask, Moderator Mask, Admin Mask, Deputy Prime Minister Mask, Congressional Review Committee mask and Attorney General mask may post in Congress where they have the access to do so, though only Members of Congress and the President have the right to vote, nominate a candidate for Speaker, or appeal a ruling of a Speaker.
- Do not make personal attacks against other members. - Members shall not threaten, accuse or question the motives of another member; nor act in a manner that disturbs Congress or its procedures; nor use profanity or sexual innuendo; nor speak against their own motion or bill; nor speak adversely on a prior action not pending; nor speak in a language other than English or French during debate.
Posting of eRepublik in-game messages, written by any Member of Congress, in any of the official forums of the eCanadian Congress, without consent of the author, is prohibited; it shall constitute a personal attack on that Member of Congress; and constitutes a breach of the Rules of Decorum. Consent is assumed not to have been given, unless the Member of Congress whose in-game messages have been posted, provides consent within the same forum thread. Should consent not have been granted, the Speaker shall immediately suspend the privileges of any Member of Congress who posts the in-game messages of another Member of Congress for a minimum of three days.
- The Speaker of Congress or his deputy has the duty to alert those other than elected members of congress whose collaboration to a discussion is required in Open Door Congress and Closed Door Congress equally. In the same note, topic creators can and should state in their post who they would like to take part in the discussion and who is required to share an opinion in the discussion."
- Members are suggested to address all remarks through the chair. - On Congress Floor the Speaker is addressed as Madam or Mr. Speaker. Members are not to speak directly to each other but maintain the tradition of speaking only to the chair.
- Refrain from speaking adversely on a prior action not pending - Since the question has been decided, it is now unavailable for debate. If you believe the question should not have been considered because it was not in order to do so, rise to a point of order and indicate what was not in order.
- Refrain from disturbing Congress.
- Do not second consent requests - A request to carry a motion via unanimous consent is not a motion and so does not require a second. It is a request that Congress treat something as occurring as if Congress had unanimously voted for that action.
- Unanimous Consent lasts 24 hours on any motion. UC can only be recognized once per motion.
A motion cannot be defeated by a consent request.
- Suspending the rules - Representatives may move to suspend the Rules of Order and/or the Rules of Decorum ( except where the Rules of Order relate to decorum ). This motion must be agreed to by unanimous consent or by a 2/3 majority and is not in order when the same outcome can be achieved within the rules.
- Grammatical/Spelling Amendments - Amendments to correct spelling and grammar will go through immediately as if the motion carried via unanimous consent. To object to such an amendment or force it to go to debate would be dilatory in the extreme. This only applies to grammatical and spelling corrections, and is not a "friendly amendment" via the back door.
The Chair will not tolerate attempts to obstruct the business of the assembly with endless amendments or frivolous motions to appeal.
Naming will be a last option to keep the business of Congress running smoothly.
How to put various questions:
- Appeal - The correct way to put an appeal is as follows "Shall the decision of the Speaker stand as the decision of Congress?" Aye votes are votes to uphold the Speaker's ruling; nay votes to overturn. The presider's decision is upheld in a tie. And Speakers are permitted to vote.
- Overturning Vetoes - "Shall [such-and-such legislation] become the law of the land, the President's veto notwithstanding?"