Constitution

 
 

ARTICLE I:  NAME & PURPOSE

Section A: Name – The name of this club shall be Cornell Political Union.

Section B: Purpose – The purpose of this club shall be:

  • To provide Cornell a forum for the debate and parliamentary discussion of political topics.

  • To periodically publish democratic resolutions incorporating the findings of the debate and parliamentary discussion.

  • To reduce hyper-partisanship through the thoughtful incorporation and acceptance of all political ideologies, and by the perseverance of strict neutrality by the Union’s leadership.

  • To sponsor public events to promote the political education of the members and the Cornell community.

ARTICLE II:  MEMBERSHIP

Section A: Eligibility - Any full-time Cornell undergraduate student is eligible for membership in the Cornell Political Union.

Section B: Selection - Members shall be selected through a recruitment process designed by the Vice President of Recruitment.

Section C: New Member Education - New members shall go through a new member education period, designed and administered by the Vice President of Recruitment, in order to integrate new members within the existing membership and to improve the skills necessary to participate in the Cornell Political Union.

ARTICLE III:  EXECUTIVE BOARD

Section A: Responsibility – Executive authority and management of the Union shall be vested in an Executive Board responsible to the entire membership to uphold these bylaws. Major organizational decisions shall be made by majority vote of the executive board.

Section B: Membership – This Board shall consist of the officers as listed in Article IV.

Section C: Meetings – This Board shall meet weekly to organize and plan future activities.

ARTICLE IV:  OFFICERS

Section A: Executive Board– The Executive Board shall be comprised of seven elected officers: President, Executive Vice President, Director of Finance, Director of Events, Director of Promotions, Director of Communications, and Director of Recruitment.

Section B: Eligibility – Officers must be full-time undergraduate students at Cornell University in good academic standing.

Section C: Elections – The officers shall be elected by general ballot at a special election meeting during the spring semester, as designated by the current President. A quorum must be present for all elections. Voting is restricted to dues-paying members physically in attendance at the election.

Section D: Terms – The officers shall serve for one year and their term of office shall begin immediately following elections at the end of the spring.

Section E: Vacancies – Vacancies in any office shall be filled by a special election. If a vacancy occurs in the office of President, the Events Director shall assume the office in an interim capacity until a special election can be held.

Section F: Impeachment – Any member of the club may move for the impeachment of an officer during the announcements of a general meeting, provided a quorum is present. If the motion receives the support of one third of the members present, a special impeachment election will be held at the next general meeting. Removing an officer requires two-thirds of the members present to vote in favor of impeachment. A quorum must be present for an impeachment vote to take place.

ARTICLE V:  DUTIES OF OFFICERS

Section A: President – It shall be the duty of the President to:

  • Set the goals and objectives of the club.

  • Schedule meetings.

  • Preside during meetings.

  • Represent the club.

  • Make decisions on behalf of the executive board in the case of a tie vote.

  • Preserve the neutral, bipartisan nature of the club at all times.

  • Appoint non-executive officers.

  • Perform such other administrative duties as ordinarily pertain to this office.

Section B:  Events Director – It shall be the duty of the Events Director to:

  • Preside in the absence of the President.

  • Assist the President in the performance of administrative duties.

  • To invite speakers and distinguished guests to present before the Union.

  • To provide regular updates to the executive board on the the guest schedule.

Section C: Vice President of Finance– It shall be the duty of the Vice President of Finance to:

  • Apply for funding and maintain relations with the Student Assembly Finance Commission.

  • Keep an itemized account of all receipts and expenditures and make reports as directed.

  • Tend to all other financial matters.

Section D: Director of Public Relations – It shall be the duty of the Director to:

  • Manage student outreach and promotion.

  • Respond to general inquiries.

  • Seek opportunities to cosponsor events with other organizations.

  • Photograph meetings and events.

  • Manage web presence and social media.

  • Oversee the Union’s publications.

Section E: Vice President of Recruitment – It shall be the duty of the Vice President of Recruitment to:

  • Lead and oversee all recruitment efforts.

  • Develop and administer a new member education program.

ARTICLE V:  MEETINGS

Section A: General body meetings – General body meetings shall be held weekly during the regular school year. Regular meetings shall be open to the public. Regular meetings shall adhere to the following procedure:

  1. President opens meeting with gavel

  2. Director of communications takes attendance

  3. Brief, general announcements by each executive board member, in the following order: Leader of the Left, Leader of the Right, Director of Communications, Director of Public Relations, Director of Finance, Vice President, President.

  4. President summarizes last meeting

  5. President sets agenda for current meeting

  6. General business

  7. President concludes meeting with gavel

General business shall be dedicated to the discussion and debate of a political topic, which will be determined by the Executive Board in advance. A guest presenter shall be invited to deliver an approximately 25 minute presentation on a political topic, which shall be followed by a period of questioning from the membership. If the Vice President is unable to procure a guest presenter, the Executive Board is charged with presenting on the topic, and answering questions. Following the presentation and questioning period, the President shall call on members to deliver speeches in support of, or against the position, followed by periods of questioning.

Section B: Special meetings – Special meetings may be called by the President. Special meetings are not bound by the procedure in section A.

Section C: Quorum – A quorum shall consist of one-half of the membership.

Section D: Parliamentary authority – Robert’s Rules of Orders, shall govern this club in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with these bylaws.

ARTICLE VI:  ADVISOR

Section A: Selection – There shall be a faculty/staff advisor who shall be selected each year by the Executive Board.

Section B: Duties – The responsibilities of the faculty advisor shall be to:

  • Maintain an awareness of the activities and programs sponsored by the student club.

  • Meet on a regular basis with the leader of the student club to discuss upcoming meetings, long range plans, goals, and problems of the club.

  • Attend regular meetings, executive board meetings as often as schedule allows.

  • Assist in the orientation of new officers.

  • Explain and clarify campus policy and procedures that apply to the club.

  • Maintain contact with the Student Life Office.

  • Provide direction in the area of parliamentary procedure, meeting facilitation, group-building, goal setting, and program planning.

  • Assist the club treasurer in monitoring expenditures, fundraising activities, and corporate sponsorship to maintain an accurate and up-to-date account ledger.

  • Inform club members of those factors that constitute unacceptable behavior on the part of the club members, and the possible consequence of said behaviors.

ARTICLE VII:  AMENDMENTS

Section A: Selection – Beginning on June 1, 2017, these bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of members present at a public meeting of the executive board.

Section B: Notice – All members shall receive advance notice of any proposed amendment at least 36 hours before the meeting at which the amendment vote takes place.

Section C: Founders - The founders of this club, Nate Baker & Troy LeCaire, shall act jointly as President for the first two years of the club’s existence, and the Executive Board position of Vice President shall remain vacant. The founders shall have executive authority to amend this constitution as necessary until May 31, 2017, after which Section A of Article IX will take effect.