My #8 is the habitual abuse of [Rule]16b.

From Jeremy Blosser:
Rule 16, RPT Rules provides:

  • a) Previous Question – At any convention, when the previous question has been moved and seconded and is sustained by a majority vote, the question shall be deemed to have been called and a vote shall occur upon the pending question, except as provided in subsection b of this Rule.

  • b) Exception – At any convention, a motion to move the previous question or to close nomination concerning any election, including the election of delegates and alternates shall not be in order until there has been reasonable opportunity for additional nominations, debate and/or amendment.

Rule 16b has been abused at several consecutive state conventions.
What is the abuse? Following the presentation of a committee report, the existing leadership of the Convention recognizes a preselected sympathetic party leader to move the previous question, forcing an immediate vote on the report without further discussion. The abuse is completed when points of order are overruled and appeals are ignored or denied, contrary to the purpose of Rule 16b.

In this case, as soon as the Rules Committee report was given, the Convention Chair, Geanie Morrison, did not open the floor to discussion, but recognized her sympathetic party leader to move the previous question.

Surrounded by a friendly group of delegates and attended by a friendly sergeant-at-arms at one of four convention microphones, I raised the point of order to the previous question motion citing Rule 16b. I was overruled and my microphone was turned off so that I couldn’t appeal! The Chair addressed another delegate at another microphone while I stayed at my microphone. Finally, Geanie Morrison came back to me and I appealed. My appeal was ruled out of order. She didn't bother to give a reason. The only reason she could have cited was that the appeal wasn't timely. However, without a microphone, I was left with no other option to be heard, and the breach was continued regardless of my best efforts to be heard.

Mallory’s Comments: One possible remedy is to have allies at the various floor microphone, ready to raise the same point of order when the convention chair recognizes someone making the previous question motion, and all shouting for an appeal in the event the point of order is again overruled. The only remedy for such abuse is to persist, even without access to a live microphone, in pressing the point of order and the appeal.

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