Convention Rules

Lead 2020: SCDP Leadership Election Convention

Below are the rules of the convention presented by the Convention Rules Committee to the Convention Committee and the Executive Council and approved by the Tennessee Democratic Party.

  1. These Rules are promulgated by the Shelby County Democratic Party (SCDP), duly elected by the people of Shelby County, Tennessee, and are subject to the By-Laws of the same.
  2. The chair of the Shelby County Democratic Party, Corey Strong, shall serve as the Chair of the Convention Committee, for the Convention to be held on March 30, 2019, beginning at 8:00 am (registration) at White Station High School, 514 S Perkins Rd, Memphis, TN 38117, for the express purpose of electing new members of the Democratic Grassroots Council and Executive Committee.
  3. The Chair shall appoint a Sergeant at Arms and authorize the same to appoint assistants to secure the Convention. The Sergeant-at-Arms shall be responsible for:
    1. Securing the doors of the convention, at the appropriate time, to ensure that only qualified Democrats participate;
    2. Maintain general order during the convention.
  4. The Chair shall appoint three (3) standing committees for the Convention:
    1. A Convention Committee - The Convention Committee will oversee the operation of the Convention, conduct training of personnel, prepare necessary materials for the Convention, ensure compliance with all Tennessee Democratic Party rules, and supervise other matters relating to the operations and venue of the Convention.
    2. A Rules Committee - The Rules Committee shall be responsible for interpretation and enforcement of the By-laws and the Rules promulgated by the Convention. It shall be responsible for review of all complaints and grievances related to the Convention, other than credentials. All decisions of the Rules Committee may be appealed to the Convention Committee, which shall have the right to review or not review such appeals.
    3. A Credentials Committee - The Credentials Committee shall be responsible for determining the eligibility of all delegates to the convention pursuant to the By-laws of the Shelby County Democratic Party and for issuing credentials. All decisions of the Credentials Committee may be appealed to the Convention Committee, which shall have the right to review or not review such appeals.
  5. The Credentials Committee shall be responsible for creating an identification system of badges and other designations for attendees and delegates to wear, indicating their eligibility to vote in specific county commission districts and to otherwise participate in the Convention.
  6. The Chair shall appoint a supervisor and an assistant for each County Commission District in Shelby County to conduct the election of the Democratic Grassroots Council and the Executive Committee caucuses. These supervisors shall meet separately with the delegates from their respective districts to conduct said elections.
  7. The order and process of elections in each of the separate district caucuses shall be as follows:
    1. Each caucus will first elect the members of the Democratic Grassroots Caucus (DGC) to which their district is entitled (per the Bylaws of the SCDP). Following the selection of the DGC, each caucus will then elect two (2) of their DGC members to serve on the Executive Committee (EC). The members of the EC shall be of different genders.
    2. To the greatest extent possible, the Executive Committee District members shall be balanced by gender, understanding that it may not always be possible based on Convention attendance.
    3. All persons in attendance and who have been deemed eligible to participate at that particular caucus shall have a right to vote on all elections in that caucus, and all such persons are eligible to stand for election. Since the elections must choose representatives with respect to gender, the supervisor of the caucus will determine the order in random fashion (by coin toss), whether the first DGC member elected will be male or female. Subsequent elections for the DGC should occur in alternate succession of gender, until all seats are filled. Should the district require an odd number of DGC positions, note that the final seat should be filled without respect to gender, as the district shall have already met the qualifications for evenly distributing members, so much as possible, as to gender.
    4. For each position on the DGC, the supervisor shall conduct a separate election, accepting nominations from eligible participants in the caucus.
    5. Once all of the DGC positions have been filled, the supervisor of the caucus shall call for nominations for the Executive Committee (EC). Although any member of the caucus may make a nomination, only members of the DGC are eligible to run for the EC. Each caucus shall elect one (1) male and one (1) female EC member.
    6. No more than two (2) members of the DGC may be elected from the same precinct, unless there are no other eligible nominations for the DGC.
    7. All persons to be nominated MUST be in attendance, even if there are insufficient numbers of persons available to fill all positions to be elected.
    8. A plurality of votes shall prevail for each election in the caucuses. In the case of a tie, a runoff between those tied shall be conducted to decide the winner.
  8. The supervisor of each caucus shall be responsible for obtaining the names and contact information of each person elected during the caucus, the office to which they were elected, and the vote tally for each such election. This information shall be turned over to the Credentials Committee (and Chair), immediately after the caucus ends.
  9. The Convention will reconvene after the caucus to announce the results and to complete all obligatory duties as outline by the Shelby County Democratic Party.
  10. The persons elected as DGC members from each of the Commission Districts shall convene no less than one (1) week and no more than two (2) weeks after the Convention to elect the new Chair of the SCDP. The time and place of this meeting shall be selected before the Convention and announced at the Convention.
  11. These Rules and the By-laws promulgated by the SCDP shall govern all phases of the Convention and may not be changed at the Convention.
  12. Registration for the Convention shall be between 8:00am and 9:30am, on the day of the Convention. All participants including those who have pre-registered, must be present and in line to check-in or register by 9:30am, the day of the Convention in order to participate in the Convention and elections.
  13. Participants in this Convention and its elected officers must be registered voters in Shelby County, Tennessee, and must be “bona fide” Democrats, as set forth in the By-laws of the Shelby County Democratic Party. Should a prospective participant have a new or updated registration status, not reflected in the Shelby County Election Commission database, it will be required of the participant to provide proof of the new or updated status. If no documentation is made available, the status of the Shelby County Election Commission database will be used to determine eligibility.
  14. Any grievance that must be resolved at the Convention shall be presented to the Rules and Credentials committee, immediately. Any grievance that may be resolved after the Convention must be presented to the Rules and/or Credentials committee within five (5) calendar days following the Convention. The Rules and Credentials committee hearing the grievance will convene within ten (10) calendar days following the Convention.
  15. Those persons elected at the Convention shall be announced publicly from the podium during the Convention and a list shall be posted to the party website (www.shelbydem.org) by the end of the following day.
  16. Nominations for the position of Chair may be made by any delegate at the Convention, after the announcement of those elected to the EC and the DGC. Should someone be nominated who is not a registered attendee of the convention, the nominator shall supply the contact information of the nominee to the Convention Committee. Further nominations, after the convention, may be made by any delegate by sending an email to the Convention Committee at info@shelbydem.org, on or before Wednesday, April 3, 2019, at 5:00 pm. Only those persons who have been nominated shall be eligible to run for Chair at the second meeting of the Convention. The committee will post the names of nominated persons for Chair on the SCDP website, (www.shelbydem.org). The Credentials Committee will promptly provide contact information about DGC members to all nominated candidates for Chair.
  17. The election for Chair shall take place on Saturday, April 6, 2019, at a time and location to be announced. Each member of the newly-elected DGC and EC shall be eligible to vote in the election of the chair. The method used to elect the chair will be Instant Runoff Voting (the ranked choice voting system for a single-winner). As a voter, you will mark your first choice 1st; your second choice 2nd; and your third choice 3rd.
    1. If a candidate gets 50.01% of the vote, he/she is declared the winner. If not, then the candidate with the fewest 1st place votes is eliminated.
    2. All votes for the eliminated candidate(s) are then redistributed among the remaining candidates based on his/her 2nd place votes.
    3. After redistribution of the votes, the candidate with 50.01% of the votes is the declared winner. If there is still is no majority winner, eliminate the lowest candidate and redistribute those votes based on 3rd placed votes.
    4. Repeat a, b, and c as necessary.