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Plurality Vote


Guest Padraig

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Guest Padraig

Our nonprofit organization elects three directors on odd years and four directors on even years. Our bylaws state that members can vote any number up to the maximum number of positions open for that election. I received this year's ballot in the mail and it specifically states that I should vote exactly four people. It also adds that if I vote anything less or more than four, teh ballot will be disqualified.

There is obviously a conflict here. How can I bring this issue up for resolution? To whom--the Teller Committee or to the Board? When do I bring it up--on election day (next Saturday) or before via email? What does RONR say about plurality-at-large votes?

Also, on the day of election right after the votes are counted, if one of the four elected directors declines the position, does the person with the fifth largest vote move up or is the position considered vacant? The bylaws state that any vacant position will be filled by the Board.

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Our nonprofit organization elects three directors on odd years and four directors on even years. Our bylaws state that members can vote any number up to the maximum number of positions open for that election. I received this year's ballot in the mail and it specifically states that I should vote exactly four people. It also adds that if I vote anything less or more than four, teh ballot will be disqualified.

Yes, the ballot appears to be mistaken.

There is obviously a conflict here. How can I bring this issue up for resolution? To whom--the Teller Committee or to the Board? When do I bring it up--on election day (next Saturday) or before via email?

The assembly itself is the judge of all questions incidental to voting or the counting of the votes. See RONR (11th ed.), p. 409, ll. 16-20.

So, it should be answered by the assembly of the organization (the members in a meeting).

What does RONR say about plurality-at-large votes?

Plurality voting is a method whereby the candidate(s) with the most votes is elected, regardless of whether he reached a majority. This type of voting must be authorized in the bylaws, otherwise, each candidate must receive a majority to be elected.

Also, on the day of election right after the votes are counted, if one of the four elected directors declines the position, does the person with the fifth largest vote move up or is the position considered vacant? The bylaws state that any vacant position will be filled by the Board.

If a winning candidate declines, the election is incomplete, and another vote must be taken.

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Guest Padraig

Pardon my ignorance, but how does one tactfully make a motion at our general membership assembly without burning too many bridges? The Election Committee Chair might take it is as a personal affront to his competence if I call his attention to his mistake in front of the assembly. He has held this position for years and for years, has been doing the same thing. Do I start my argument by raising a Point of Information and go from there?

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