CLUBS RULE

February 19, 2010

UPDATE 04.14.12: As of today, neither the Texas Democratic Party nor the Republican Party of Texas is registered with the Secretary of State as a corporation; limited partnership; or limited liability company. In other words, they remain private clubs.


NOTE: Reading this article in conjunction with TEXAS TWO-STEP enhances its significance.

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In the summer of 2008, before I knew half as much about the political process as I have learned since that time, I submitted a comment to the PUMA PAC blog, containing this epiphany:  the Democratic Party is only a club.

See, I had just ‘learned’ there exists a category of states I dubbed ‘vote binding states,’ which are those states that have enacted laws essentially saying, ‘In our state, being a “pledged delegate” means, you must vote for the person voters elected you to represent, on the roll call vote on the floor of the party Convention.’  (Did you know, DNC rules only require pledged delegates to use their “good conscience”?)  (“All delegates to the National Convention pledged to a presidential candidate shall in all good conscience reflect the sentiments of those who elected them.”)  (http://s3.amazonaws.com/apache.3cdn.net/fb3fa279c88bf1094b_qom6bei0o.pdf, p. 23.)

I saw that BO’s people were harassing HRC pledged delegates to change their votes to him, in advance of the Convention.  In other words, in these vote binding states, BO’s people were enticing HRC’s people to break the law.  So, I drafted letters to state Attorneys General in the 13 (thirteen) vote binding states I identified, complaining about this illegal conduct from BO’s camp.  Next, I needed to recruit voters from those vote binding states to send these letters.  But first, I had to explain to these recruits, in lay terms, what I was talking about.  For this, I developed a primer.  And in the primer, here is how I summarized the hierarchy of commandments applying to pledged delegates: state laws trump the rules made up by the political party, every time.  https://jbjd.wordpress.com/to-stop-harassment-of-clinton-pledged-delegates-in-vote-binding-states/

That’s when it hit me: the Democrats (and Republicans) are nothing more than private clubs.

#309 jbjd on 08.18.08 at 3:59 am

THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT COMMENT I HAVE EVER WRITTEN OR WILL EVER WRITE ON THIS BLOG… PLEASE REFER OTHERS TO THIS COMMENT THROUGHOUT THE DAY, IN SUBSEQUENT COMMENTS… I AM BUSY WRITING YOUR STATE-SPECIFIC LETTERS TO THE ATTORNEYS GENERAL, TO BE COPIED TO OUR DEAR STATE DELEGATES PLEDGED TO HRC, TO LET THEM KNOW, WE HAVE THEIR BACKS…

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DECONSTRUCTING DEMOCRACY AND THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY

My Dear Fellow PUMAs,

If you are going crazy trying to figure out what’s happening with the Democratic Party, join the club. I’m not kidding. Join the club. Because it just hit me, the way to understand this Democratic nominating process is to think of The Democratic Party as what it is – a club. And the only thing that makes this club so special is that it was able to get permission from each of the 50 states to collect campaign contributions and put the names of the candidates it wants to hold office onto the state’s election ballot. That’s it. That’s all there is. Let me explain.

According to Party – or rather, club rules, presidential candidates are chosen at the club’s nominating convention. Afterward, the club submits the name of its candidate for POTUS to the appropriate state official in each state – usually the Secretary of State – as part of an application to get onto the state’s general election ballot, in compliance with that state’s laws. In fact, states only allow the candidate for POTUS chosen by a “major political party” to submit ballot papers so late in the game because club rules and by-laws require their candidates to be chosen at a “nominating convention.”

The club determines who will be its candidate for POTUS on the general election ballot through a vote at the convention by people it calls “delegates,” which delegates obtained that status through an allocation process set by the club. That is, the club places the names of its proposed candidates on state ballots in the primary and caucus elections and then, in exchange for receiving a specific number of votes in that process, the candidates are assigned a delegate to vote for them at the convention. Most state delegates are given a special status, called “pledged.” According to club rules, when these pledged delegates cast their votes at the convention, they should use their best judgment to represent the wishes of the voters based on whose votes they were elected. Historically, by counting these delegates pledged to each candidate, the club has usually been able to predict which of its candidates will end up with the nomination at the end of the primary and caucus process, since one candidate usually garners enough pledged delegates to surpass the number the club set as the requirement at the convention. But not this year. Neither club candidate – BO or HRC – was assigned enough delegates through the primary and caucus process to secure the nomination at the convention. Luckily, the club had in place rules whereby this deficit in delegates could be made up by special delegates commonly referred to as super delegates who get to cast their votes for either candidate at the convention.

The Democratic Party set up volumes of rules and by-laws that govern all these operations, with auspicious sounding titles like “Charter,” “Constitution,” “Model Rules to Delegate Selection Process,” and “Call to the Convention.” But here’s the thing about all these club rules: they can be changed at any time. According to club rules. So, if like me, you have read club rules and believe, as I do, that members of the club have not played fair throughout this presidential nominating process, am I saying there is nothing you can do about it? Hardly.

Remember what I said in the beginning: the state only lets the club get onto official state ballots as long as they follow state rules. And unlike club rules, when states make rules, they’re called laws. (TO BE CONTINUED…)
©jbjd

(In the interest of full disclosure, let me say, I was banned from that blog just days after this comment was posted.)

In the 1 1/2 years since I experienced this 3:00 AM epiphany that ‘club’ is just another word for ‘political party,’ I have learned (and written) volumes about the DNC.  Now, I know it by its official name:  the Democratic National Committee Services Corporation.  That’s right; it’s a corporation.  That’s why I now regularly refer to this business entity as the D Corporation (in case you hadn’t noticed).

Before I initiated the present campaign to submit document requests to the Texas Democratic Party (“TDP”) under the Texas open records law, I had to determine whether the TDP was a covered entity under that law.  First, I tried to ascertain its legal construct. I hit a brick wall.  Luckily, through other means, I was able to conclude, the TDP is subject to provisions of the open records law, regardless of its organizational construct.  Then, after the campaign to obtain records was underway, a loyal Texan and I continued to research the nature of the TDP until we got answers.

So, what is the legal construct of the TDP?  Let me give you a hint what it’s not.

Here are the documents returned by the TX Secretary of State web site after a paid on-line search of documents held by that office, for an entity called Texas Democratic Party (“Find Entity Name Search”).  (Recall that the Certification of BO’s Nomination signed by TDP Chair, Attorney Boyd Richie, and submitted to state election officials to get them to print the name of Barack Obama next to the D on the general election ballot; was printed on letterhead showing the name, “Texas Democratic Party.”) (See this document and Mr. Richie’s accompanying letter, also on TDP letterhead, on p. 3 of the citizen complaint of election fraud to AG, in REMEMBER the ALAMO )

Did you notice what name is missing?  Yep; the Texas Democratic  Party.  In the words of Randall Dillard, Director of Communications, Office of the TX SoS:  “There is no requirement in state law that political parties organize as a business entity and since the parties are not found in a search of our records, they are not organized as corporations, limited partnerships or limited liability companies.”

Whoa!  If the TDP is none of these then, what is it?

Well, I tried a Google search for “clubs in Texas.”  And look at what showed up at the bottom of page 6  (not to be confused with Page Six, the NY Post scandal column, http://www.nypost.com/pagesix): Clubs and Organizations:  Texas Democratic Party

So, I clicked on that link, which led me to all of the Clubs and Organizations organized under the big top of the TDP.

I clicked on the link in the lower right-hand corner, txdemocrats.org.  Look who was staring me in the face.

Boyd Richie, Chair of the Texas Democratic Party.

In sum, here is the answer to the question, what is the TDP.  It is the club mystically possessed with the power to get TX election officials to print the name of Barack Obama next to the D on the state’s 2008 general election ballot based only on the word of its Chair that he is Constitutionally eligible for POTUS, notwithstanding no one in the club is willing to disclose, why.

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Freedom costs.


NEVER LESS THAN a TREASON (1 of 2)

August 25, 2009

© 2009 jbjd

The title of this post is inspired by a line in the last stanza from one of my favorite poems, Reluctance,  by my favorite poet, Robert Frost.

Ah, when to the heart of man
Was it ever less than a treason
To go with the drift of things,
To yield with a grace to reason,
And bow and accept the end
Of a love or a season?

I have always found giving up without a fight to be treasonous, especially when I am certain I am right.  And I am certainly right about Barack Obama.  That is, people within  the DNC selected him to become POTUS notwithstanding the evidence indicates he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job.  Specifically, he is not a NBC.  Indefatigable, I have assembled this primer which, hopefully, will end the interminable farce over how best to address his Constitutional eligibility.    I name the names of those people responsible for depositing him in the Oval Office, and define the precise scope of their culpability, in anticipation that efforts to rectify this election anomaly will now be focused squarely on them.   Keep in mind that, by identifying the people with direct culpability, I am by definition ruling out everyone else.   For starters, this blameless faction includes Barack Obama.  Because even assuming he is not a NBC, without these others, he could never have gotten the job.

Recognizing the real culprits in this drama requires an understanding of the process for electing the POTUS, as spelled out in the Constitution.   Fortunately, our tax dollars paid for an enterprise that will contribute to such an understanding.  The Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress published an excellent report entitled, “The Electoral College: How It Works,” which contains this concise summary on the Presidential election process.  Please, master this passage before you proceed.  (All emphasis to the original is mine.)  (jbjd note (08.05.10):  Subsequent to writing this article, I decided to stop referring to Electors using the word “College,”  as this term does not appear in the Constitution.)

When Americans vote for a President and Vice President, they actually vote for presidential electors, known collectively as the electoral college. It is these electors, chosen by the people, who elect the chief executive. The Constitution assigns each state a number of electors equal to the combined total of its Senate and House of Representatives delegations; at present, the number of electors per state ranges from three to 55, for a total of 538. Anyone may serve as an elector, except for Members of Congress, and persons holding offices of “Trust or Profit” under the Constitution. In each presidential election year, a group (ticket or slate) of candidates for elector is nominated by political parties and other groups in each state, usually at a state party convention, or by the party state committee. It is these elector-candidates, rather than the presidential and vice presidential nominees, for whom the people vote in the election held on Tuesday after the first Monday in November (jbjd note:  date omitted). In most states, voters cast a single vote for the slate of electors pledged to the party presidential and vice presidential candidates of their choice. The slate winning the most popular votes is elected; this is known as the winner-take-all, or general ticket, system. Maine and Nebraska use the district system, under which two electors are chosen on a statewide, at-large basis, and one is elected in each congressional district. Electors assemble in their respective states on Monday after the second Wednesday in December (jbjd note:  date omitted). They are pledged and expected, but not required, to vote for the candidates they represent. (jbjd note (08.05.10):  Some states have enacted laws that  require Electors to support the nominee of the party; but no faithless Elector has ever been prosecuted for violating this oath, and Congress has never failed to ratify the vote of the Electors even when this includes the votes of these faithless Electors.) Separate ballots are cast for President and Vice President, after which the electoral college ceases to exist for another four years. The electoral vote results are counted and declared at a joint session of Congress, held on January 6 of the year succeeding the election. (jbjd note:  Congress enacted a law changing this date to January 8 just for the year 2009.)  A majority of electoral votes (currently 270 of 538) is required to win. This report will be updated as events warrant.

http://www.fpc.state.gov/documents/organization/28109.pdf

Thus, on January 8, 2009, Congress finalized the election of BO for POTUS when, exercising a procedure spelled out in the Constitution, they ratified the individual vote tallies from Electoral College votes cast in all 50 states, and the District of Columbia, which had been submitted to them via the Constitutionally prescribed process by then Vice President Cheney, the President of the Senate, who had received these totals directly from the individual state Electoral Colleges as required by the Constitution.  http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/faq.html

Immediately after this Congressional Ratification, self-identified “Patriots,” certain BO is not a NBC, flooded the blogosphere with hyperbolic rants against everyone in Congress for failing to insist on a Constitutional vetting of the man before voting for Ratification.  These so-called ‘Patriots’ referred to Congresspeople of both parties as “Traitors,” accusing their elected officials of committing “Treason” for failing to uphold the eligibility requirements for POTUS spelled out in the Constitution, even though, ironically, the Constitution itself  required Ratification once Congress was confident the Electoral College had conducted its vote in accordance with the ‘process’ prescribed by the Constitution.

In other words, Congress is not directly responsible for making BO POTUS but only for Ratifying the results of the voting undertaken by the Electoral College.  This means that they are also not responsible for the fact he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job, even assuming he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job.

This does not mean the Electoral College is directly responsible for making BO POTUS.

Neither the Constitution nor federal law prescribe the manner in which each state appoints its Electors other than directing that they be appointed on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November.  In most States, the Electors are appointed through a state-wide popular election (“general election”).

That is, voters only elect Electors in the state’s general election.

Currently, Electors are nominated to fill these positions by the political parties at their state party conventions or by a vote of the party’s central committee in each state. Electors are often selected to recognize their service and dedication to the party. Generally, they hold a leadership position in the party. Often, they are major party fundraisers.  They may be state elected officials but, the Constitution prohibits members of Congress from becoming Electors in the Electoral College.

Whether the names of these nominated Electors then appear on the ballot depends on election laws that vary state to state.  In some states, the names of these Electors appear along with the letter “D” or “R,” along with the name of the party nominee.  In other states, only the name of the nominee appears along with the designation of the party.  But regardless of the appearance of the names on the general election ballot, voters in each state only choose the electors on the day of the general election. http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/faq.html

Weeks after their ‘appointment’ by means of the general election, these elected state Electors meet in each state – this gathering of Electors is referred to as the Electoral College, although the term Electoral College does not appear in the Constitution – to cast votes for the next POTUS.   The Constitution is silent about the factors that go into their voting decision.  Thus, Electors are Constitutionally free to cast votes for whomever they want.  This means, they may even vote for a person who is not the nominee of their political party or, is not in the same party as the slate of Electors that won the state’s general election.  However, some states have enacted laws that require the slate of Electors receiving the largest popular vote in the state’s general election, must cast their votes for the Presidential nominee from the same political party.  In other words, in these states, if the D’s received more votes than the R’s, then the Electors for the D party must cast their votes for the D party nominee.  And every state except for NE and ME, and the District of Columbia are winner take all, meaning, all of the electoral votes assigned to that state (or the District of Columbia) must be cast by Electors of the winning political party.

Immediately after the vote of the Electoral College, self-identified “Patriots,” certain BO was Constitutionally ineligible for the job, flooded the blogosphere with hyperbolic rants against the Democrats in the Electoral Colleges who cast votes for BO without first vetting him for Constitutional qualifications.  These ‘Patriots’ referred to Electors representing the Democratic Party as “Traitors,” accusing them of committing “Treason” for failing to uphold the eligibility requirements spelled out in the Constitution.  But remember, the Constitution does not require Electors to vet the party candidate for President as to Constitutional eligibility,  being silent as to the qualification of the person Electors may elect for the job.

http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/faq.html

In other words, the Electoral College is not directly responsible for making BO POTUS but only for casting their votes for him in accordance with both the Constitution and state law, as the nominee of the D party when that party was the winner of the state’s general election.  This also means that they are not responsible for the fact he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job, even assuming he is Constitutionally ineligible for the job.

Then, the responsibility for electing an ineligible POTUS must be found in a process directly related to his nomination.

(TO BE CONTINUED IN PART 2 OF 2.)

When Americans vote for a President and Vice President, they actually vote for
presidential electors, known collectively as the electoral college. It is these electors,
chosen by the people, who elect the chief executive. The Constitution assigns each state
a number of electors equal to the combined total of its Senate and House of
Representatives delegations; at present, the number of electors per state ranges from
three to 55, for a total of 538. Anyone may serve as an elector, except for Members of
Congress, and persons holding offices of “Trust or Profit” under the Constitution. In
each presidential election year, a group (ticket or slate) of candidates for elector is
nominated by political parties and other groups in each state, usually at a state party
convention, or by the party state committee. It is these elector-candidates, rather than
the presidential and vice presidential nominees, for whom the people vote in the election
held on Tuesday after the first Monday in November (November 2, 2004). In most
states, voters cast a single vote for the slate of electors pledged to the party presidential
and vice presidential candidates of their choice. The slate winning the most popular
votes is elected; this is known as the winner-take-all, or general ticket, system. Maine
and Nebraska use the district system, under which two electors are chosen on a
statewide, at-large basis, and one is elected in each congressional district. Electors
assemble in their respective states on Monday after the second Wednesday in December
(December 13, 2004). They are pledged and expected, but not required, to vote for the
candidates they represent. Separate ballots are cast for President and Vice President,
after which the electoral college ceases to exist for another four years. The electoral
vote results are counted and declared at a joint session of Congress, held on January 6
of the year succeeding the election. A majority of electoral votes (currently 270 of 538)
is required to win. This report will be updated as events warrant.

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