Tuesday, August 12, 2008

In Texas All Votes Aren't Equal - Report of 2008 Texas State Democratic Credentials Committee Cites Evidence of Procedural Irregularities

By Faith Chatham - DFWRCC - August 12, 2008
I just received a copy of the Report of 2008 Texas Democratic Convention Credentials Committee from TDP Staffer Jim Boyton.

The summary is below:

The Committee heard heart-felt, dispiriting testimony from witnesses representing hundreds of challengers about improprieties at many county/senatorial district conventions. Even though the Committee could not always ascertain the factual predicate necessary to divine a remedy that would deny the fruits of the wrongdoing to the violators without harming the effort of welcoming participation by tens of thousands of new Democrats and beginning the healing process, the Committee implores the Party to take stringent steps to prevent recurrence of the following types of infractions:
• Abandoning the convention leadership’s responsibility to ensure credentials go only to those properly elected at the precinct conventions below as properly reflected on the precinct convention minutes returned in a timely manner;
• Allowing participation by alternates or visitors in the voting in precinct caucuses or the voting on the floor of the convention;
• Not recognizing delegates on the floor to challenge the approval of the nominating committee’s nominees for4 delegate-at-large without allowing individual challenges;
• Having one person serving in multiple positions, e.g. Chair of the Tabulations Committee, Rules Committee and Credentials Committee simultaneously as well as adopting and enforcing special rules;
• Claiming to suspend the rules or adopting special rules under the rubric of Robert’s Rules of Order in order to operate in direct violation of the Rules of the Texas Democratic Party;
• Holding joint conventions of different senatorial districts within a county, including joint Nominations or other committees;
• Not appointing members of the Credentials or other committees at the time and in the manner prescribed in the rules, including not in open meetings or not properly balanced;
• Ordering precinct conventions to be ignored and to be reheld without proper factual basis found by the appropriate authorities and without opportunity for sufficient notice to all potential precinct voters;
• Not having the precinct convention minutes and all exhibits made available in a timely manner to anyone wanting to use those materials for supporting any Democratic candidates;
• Not addressing the time frame for the credential verification and challenge processes so that those matters can be resolved sufficiently in advance of the opening of the conventions to avoid long delays in the convention before conducting their other business.

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