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Ballot process when voting for more than person is allowed (board of directors)

Guest SAS

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Is there a required process for voting by ballot when each voter is able to vote for multiple people (for a board of directors)?

In the past, voters were able to vote on a single ballot for up to the number of open positions. Someone is wondering if it can be changed to each voter voting for a single candidate and everyone voting multiple times. So if there were three open spots and four nominees, each voter would vote for one of the four (or a write-in) the first time. The person with the most votes would be the first elected director and then voters would vote for one of the three (or a write-in), etc. until the three open positions were filled. Voters may vote for the same person all three times or different people. Does this way of voting follow Robert's Rules of Order? 

Thank you!

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I think that, unless write-in votes are prohibited in the bylaws, it would be out order to conduct the election in any manner that would have the effect of prohibiting write-in votes.  For example, a ballot on the motion "That A be elected," no voter could properly cast a write-in vote.  He could vote for or against A only.  As each member has a right to cast a write-in vote on a ballot unless the bylaws say otherwise (pp. 441-2) this rule could not be suspended and its violation would would cause the election to be null and void.

It would, however, be possible, to vote for each seat separately, taking  the vote each seat on a separate ballot.  The rules would need to be suspended (2/3 vote).  I frankly see no advantage to doing that, and it would likely take more time to complete the election.


Edited by J. J.
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On 1/8/2020 at 5:46 PM, Guest SAS said:

Thanks! We will stay with a single ballot with multiple names then. Yes, I was aware that a majority vote was needed for each seat.

And if there are, say, three open seats to be elected ("Vote for up three"), the ballot should also contain three blank lines for write-ins.

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Though nothing prohibits separate ballots from being taken for each open position until all positions are filled, I like the single ballot approach for its efficiency.

Even simpler, use a blank piece of paper and give instructions to the members for voting. In other words, tell the voting members the maximum number of names for write-in, who is eligible for write-in, what constitutes an invalid or illegally completed ballot that won't be counted, and finally, the unit number for the member's interest being voted (and/or signature if your governing documents require a signature).

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