Proposed Constitution of the Progressive Party of Iowa
We, the people of the Progressive Party of Iowa, in order to organize and perpetuate a representative, effective, and responsible party organization in the State of Iowa, advance the interests of the Progressive Party, to promote and advance the principles of economic, social and environmental justice and sustainability, and to uphold civil rights, civil liberties, and constitutional government through electoral and democratic political activities, do establish this Constitution of the Progressive Party of Iowa.
Article I – Name and Membership
Section 1 – Name:
This organization shall be known as the Progressive Party of Iowa.
Section 2 – Eligibility to Participate:
All persons at least 18 years of age as of the date of the next General Election who are residents of Iowa, who support the purpose of the Progressive Party of Iowa, and who are registered to vote, or who register at the time of their request to participate in the process in question as Progressives, shall be eligible to participate as members of this organization.
Section 4 – Members:
Unless specifically denied such right by law, all members of the Progressive Party of Iowa shall be eligible to participate in all activities of the Party; shall be eligible to be elected as delegates to conventions; shall be eligible to be elected to an office in the Progressive Party of Iowa; and shall be eligible to vote on any motion, resolution, nomination, or election affecting the Progressive Party of Iowa at any meeting, caucus, conference, or convention in the state, districts, counties, or precincts, provided, however, that such person shall have been elected to a position of such authority and that at the time of such service, holding office, and/or voting, such person shall be a resident within the geographic boundaries of the political subdivision they represents.
Article II – State Central Committee
Section 1 – Officers
The officers of the Progressive Party of Iowa shall be elected by the State Central Committee at the biennial organizational meeting or at a special meeting of the State Central Committee called by at least two-thirds majority of the State Central Committee. The officers shall be a Chair, Vice Chair, Treasurer, Secretary, and Diversity Chair.
Powers and Responsibilities of Officers:
Chair: The Chair shall be the chief executive officer. The Chair shall convene meetings of the State Central Committee, biennial organizational meetings, and annual State Party Conventions. The Chair shall work with the Vice-Chair and other officers to establish an agenda for the year with the consent of the State Central Committee.
Vice-Chair: The Vice Chair shall assist the Chair and act as Chair in the Chair’s absence. The Vice Chair shall be the chief fundraising officer and work closely with the Diversity Chair.
Secretary: The Secretary shall keep the minutes of all actions of the State Central Committee and shall see to it that all reports required to be filed with government offices are filed in an accurate and timely manner. The Secretary shall assure that a list of active Party members, with contact information is maintained exclusively for Party purposes as established by the State Central Committee.
Treasurer: The Treasurer shall keep all financial records of the Party. The Treasurer shall cause written accounts of financial records to be prepared prior to each regular meeting of the State Central Committee.
Diversity Chair: The Diversity Chair shall work to ensure the Party is an inclusive and welcoming organization. The Diversity Chair shall create reports for the State Central Committee indicating what actions the Party must take to build a truly inclusive and welcoming organization for all.
Section 2 – State Central Committee Structure
Membership: The State Central Committee shall consist of the State Delegates elected by the district conventions, the State Rules Chair, State Platform Chair, and the chairs of the Constituency Caucuses.
The Constituency Caucuses include the Black, Latino, Asian and Pacific Islander, Native American, Disability, LGBTQIA, Women, Senior and Retirees, Labor, Rural, and Armed Forces Veterans caucuses. Membership of these caucuses shall consist of all of each groups’ representation at their respective biennial reorganization meeting. Each Caucus shall hold a Convention during the odd-numbered years and elect officers. There must be at least a Chair and Vice-Chair. Both the Chair and Vice-Chair shall be members of the State Central Committee. The Vice-Chairs of each Caucus shall vote only in the absence of the Caucus Chair.
State Central Committee Meetings: The State Central Committee shall meet at least quarterly. State Central Committee meetings may be called by the Chair, Vice-Chair, or by petition to the Chair or Vice-Chair by at least twenty-five percent of the State Central Committee members.
Powers and Responsibilities: The State Central Committee shall have the following powers and responsibilities.
- To elect officers;
- To administer the day to day functioning of the Party;
- To manage the finances of the Party and to authorize expenditures of all Party funds;
- To recruit candidates for office;
- To serve as a liaison between the Party membership and elected officials;
- To coordinate and provide support to Party subcommittees;
- To adopt procedures for district and county committees to follow that assure democratic process;
- To conduct those activities which promote the purpose, objectives and principles of the party; and
- To perform other functions as delegated by the State Convention.
Article III – Diversity Committees
Section 1 – Membership
The State Diversity Committee shall consist of one member from each Congressional District elected every two years at district conventions, two members appointed by the State Party Chair with the consent of the State Central Committee, and the Chair of the State Diversity Committee elected every two years at the State Convention.
The District Diversity Committees shall consist of the State Diversity Committee members elected at the district conventions who shall serve as Chairs for each of the district committee respectively, and one member from each county within the Congressional District who is elected every two years at the county conventions. The County Diversity Committee shall consist of the District Diversity Committee members elected at county conventions who shall serve as Chairs of their county committees respectively and three or more additional members elected by County Central Committees.
Section 2 – Powers and Responsibilities
The Diversity Committees shall work to ensure that there is no oppression of any kind within the Party, all caucus/convention, platform development, and delegate selection processes, within every committee, election of officers, and other party organizations with particular concerns toward those groups who have been historically oppressed and or marginalized. The Diversity Committees shall work to ensure that everyone who supports the Progressive Party purpose and who are registered to vote regardless of age, color, creed, familial status, gender identity/expression, marital status, national origin, physical disability, race, religion, sex, and sexual orientation are treated equally. The Diversity Committees shall work closely with the Constituency Caucuses to ensure full participation in the party and that their concerns are heard.
Article IV – Congressional District Committees and Conventions
Section 1 – Congressional District Central Committees:
- Congressional District Central Committees shall exist. The membership shall consist of the District Committeepersons on the State Central Committee, and one person for each 1,000 votes cast for the Progressive candidate for Congress in the last two General Elections. Each county shall have at least two members.
- One member shall be the County Chair. Others shall be elected by the County Central Committee at their first regular meeting following their biennial organizational meeting.
- The Chair of the District Central Committee shall be elected by the District Central Committee from any member of the Progressive Party of Iowa.
- Each County may elect alternates to the District Committee to serve as substitutes at District Central Committee meetings if the elected person is unable to attend.
- The primary purpose of the district Central Committee shall be the election of a Progressive member of Congress. The District Central Committee shall also be responsible for assisting the election of state legislators.
- The District Central Committee shall hold a minimum of one meeting every three months. A report of the financial status of the District shall be presented.
- The Chair of the District Central Committee shall propose programs of activities for the Committee.
Section 2 – Conventions, Call and Apportionment
Congressional District Conventions, composed of delegates elected at County Conventions to represent their respective counties at such District Conventions, shall be held each even-numbered year within the Congressional Districts. The State Chair, subject to the approval of the State Central Committee, shall issue a call for such conventions. The number of votes to which each county shall be entitled in such conventions shall be the same as for the State Convention.
Section 3 – Conventions, Responsibilities:
District Conventions, by vote of their accredited delegates present, shall:
- Elect [number] district committeepersons, at least [number] of whom shall be women, who shall represent such district on the State Central Committee of the Progressive Party of Iowa, and whose terms of office shall commence following the next State Convention, and shall continue for two years.
- Elect members and alternates of all committees for such Convention, to represent and cast votes to which such District is entitled on such committees. At least twenty (20) days prior to the District Conventions each of the Convention Committees shall nominate individuals to serve on the corresponding committees of the State Convention. Elected alternates to State Convention Committees may only replace an elected convention committee member from their own district. The number of members and alternates on all committees to the State Convention from each Congressional District shall be determined by the State Central Committee.
Section 4 – Convention Committees’ Formation and Responsibilities:
- Each District Convention shall be led by District Committees on Arrangements, Credentials, Rules and Nominations, and Platform.
- The State Chair, with the consent of the State Central Committee, shall apportion membership on the above District Convention Committees to the counties within each district.
- Members of the above District Committees shall be elected by county conventions; the right to elect District Convention Committee members being apportioned to preference groups within county conventions that divide into preference groups, else election shall be by the convention.
- Each District Convention Committee shall nominate to the District Convention those members of the committee which it recommends be elected to serve on the corresponding permanent committee of the State Convection; election being apportioned to preference groups within District Conventions which divide into preference groups, else election shall be by the convention.
- Each District Convention Committee shall make a report to the District Convention for the consideration and action of the District Convention.
Members of State Convention Committees shall carry to their State Committee meetings reports of the priority concerns and formal actions of the District Convention and Committee for the consideration of the State Committees. Such reports shall include recommendations on how to improve the Progressive Party of Iowa’s Caucus/Convention process in the future.