High Council of Kalșeri

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High Council of Kalșeri
Ralton Geri Kalșeri (kh)
Gran Consejo de Caljeres (es)
Grand Conseil de Calanséry (fr)
Ard-Chomhairle Cáilsérí (ga)
48th High Council
Coat of arms or logo
Type
Type
Leadership
HIll Cassandra NewellK4C
Since March 19, 2017
Majority Leader
Hon. William C. KusznieskiSCP
Since March 19, 2017
Opposition Leader
Hon. Ashley MoriartyLDP
Since October 16, 2014
Perpetual Leader
Rt. Hon. Sebastianus LinșLDP
Since September 23, 2019
Structure
Seats 210
Kalserian High Council 2017.svg
Political groups
  Libertarians (36)
  BIP (1)
  Șin Seri (1)
  Perpetuals: (10)
Length of term
5 years
Elections
Instant-runoff voting
Last election
2017
Meeting place
High Council Building, Evalria
Website
highcouncil.kl

The High Council of Kalșeri, sometimes called the Parliament, is the legislative branch of Kalșeri. Prior to 1996, the High Council used to be the lower house of the Parliament of Kalșeri, with the Senate being the upper house.

Composition[edit]

The High Council constituencies for 2017

The High Council is composed of 210 seats, 200 of which are elected directly by the citizens. The election of the High Council takes place on the third Sunday of March of a year ending in 2 or 7, unless otherwise stated in an emergency bill.

The number of seats allocated for Kalșeri proper is 194, which is the sum of all the results of the population of each canton divided by 150,000; the results are reviewed every ten years, after the publication of the Census of the year prior, and the borders of the High Council districts are changed accordingly by a non-partisan body, to avoid gerrymandering. Kalúen, the most populated canton, has 31 seats, while Cape Sundervale, the least populated canton, has one. The remaining six seats are reserved to Kalșerians living abroad.

Perpetual High Councillors[edit]

A Perpetual High Councillor (Loaralgerigi) is someone, often a prestigious citizen or a former President, who is nominated High Councillor by the President and holds the charge for the rest of their life. The Charter sets the number of Perpetual High Councillors to ten. Perpetual High Councillors are grouped together, regardless of their political affiliation, and their seats are not contested in elections.

The post of Perpetual High Councillor was established in 1996, following the constitutional referendum, announced by Phil Garner, which abolished the Senate.

Perpetual High Councillors have the task of reviewing bills and making sure that said bills do not contradict the Charter. Privileges held by the Perpetual High Councillors include being allowed to sleep during debate, being allowed to enter or leave the High Council building at pleasure, covered personal expenses, fixed salary, immunity from expulsion, and being referred to as The Right Honorable, rather than just The Honorable, which is for the elected High Councillors.

Portrait Name Nomination Occupation
Tim Wirth.jpg Ionas Filsak
(1924-06-09) June 9, 1924 (age 96)
May 17, 1996
(by Phil Garner)
President of Kalșeri, 1984-1989
Spanish Defense Minister Narciso Serra and aides arrive at the airport for the NATO Nuclear Planning Group conference (cropped).jpg Phil Garner
(1941-04-04) April 4, 1941 (age 79)
October 2, 1999
(by Alejandra Ríos Soriano)
President of Kalșeri, 1989-1999
Rosa Conde, compadece en la rueda de prensa posterior al Consejo de Ministros (cropped).jpeg Alejandra Ríos Soriano
(1949-01-31) January 31, 1949 (age 71)
October 2, 2004
(by Robert Havlichek)
President of Kalșeri, 1999-2004
Eduardo Serra.jpg Robert Havlichek
2007–2009
(1956-09-05) September 5, 1956 (age 63)
October 2, 2009
(by Sebastianus Linș)
President of Kalșeri, 2004-2009
Rikárd Mensis
(1946-01-04) January 4, 1946 (age 74)
May 8, 2011
(by Sebastianus Linș)
Maestro
Ángel Acebes 2008 (cropped).jpg Sebastianus Linș
(1962-05-22) May 22, 1962 (age 58)
October 2, 2014
(by Maksimilianus Ureska)
President of Kalșeri, 2009-2014
Dr. Edward Murs
(1959-12-13) December 13, 1959 (age 60)
October 31, 2015
(by Maksimilianus Ureska)
Doctor, Professor of Neurobiology at the University of Evalria
Jacob Thienes
(1976-04-09) April 9, 1976 (age 44)
October 27, 2017
(by Maksimilianus Ureska)
Secretary of the Kalșerian Deaf Society
Teri Holbrook
(1993-07-16) July 16, 1993 (age 26)
March 23, 2019
(by Maksimilianus Ureska)
LGBT+ rights activist
Michelle Ndiaye-Foster
(1979-10-02) October 2, 1979 (age 40)
June 15, 2020
(by Maksimilianus Ureska)
Actress and black rights activist

Functions[edit]

As the High Council is the national legislature of Kalșeri, all bills and laws originate from the High Council. All bills pertaining the financial operations of the State must originate from the High Council, and require the unanimous approval of the Perpetual High Councillors. A simple majority is required for a bill to be forwarded to the President, who then may either sign the bill into law or veto it; the High Council may override a veto after the third rejection.

The High Council is also the sole wielder of the power to incapacitate the President, a member of their Cabinet or an official from the judiciary branch.

Structure[edit]

The High Council is composed of 210 High Councillors, 200 of which are directly elected, with the remaining ten forming the group of the Perpetual High Councillors, which consists of former Presidents and renowned Kalșerian citizens.

Seating[edit]

As per tradition, the Social Cooperationists sit on the left, while the Liberal Democrats sit on the right of the High Summoner's dais. For smaller parties, their place is often determined based on their ideology. The Perpetual High Councillors sit on the furthest right, regardless of their actual political affiliation.

Manner of address[edit]

Until 2004, it was illegal to refer directly to a fellow High Councillor, the High Summoner or the President, if present; High Councillors were to use full styles: "The (Right) Honorable (Perpetual) Member (for Constituency)" for High Councillors and Perpetuals, "His/Her Illustriousness (the High Summoner)" for the High Summoner and "His/Her Excellency (the President)" for the President: this rule was inherited from the British House of Commons. The relaxation of the rule means that High Councillors may now call each other by name and use "Your Illustriousness/Excellency" for the High Summoner and the President respectively, thereby streamlining debate. However, High Councillors are still banned from calling the High Summoner or the President by name.

Offices[edit]

High Summoner[edit]

The High Summoner is the presiding officer of the High Council. The High Summoner's duties include regulating and monitoring discussion held during the daily session of the High Council, ruling on points of order, announcing the results of votes and executing disciplinary actions: the High Summoner has the power to suspend High Councillors for the rest of the day's sitting or expel them from the current legislature.

The High Summoner is a High Councillor, a primus inter pares chosen by the High Council to monitor debate. Upon nomination, the High Summoner's former constituency seat is occupied by the leader of the local section of the Party of the High Summoner. The High Summoner, perceived as a neutral figure, is also expected to suspend their membership of the party during their stay as High Summoner. Most of the time, the High Summoner is chosen among the governing party or coalition.

Father of the House[edit]

Unlike the High Summoner, the Father of the House (Mother of the House for female High Councillors) is a largely ceremonial role bestowed upon the longest-serving High Councillor. Some actual benefits include raised retirement benefits, a higher role in the order of precedence and presiding over the election of the High Summoner. The current Mother of the House is Liberal Democrat Patty Garnier, High Councillor for Falșak since 1977.

Membership[edit]

The requirements for holding the office of High Councillor are codified in the Charter. To run for High Councillor, a citizen must meet the following requirements:

  • be born in Kalșeri, or elsewhere to Kalșerian parents;
    • If a foreigner is elected to the High Council, they must first pass the Citizenship Test, a quiz about general culture, history and political life in Kalșeri; they may not sit in the High Council until they have passed the Test.
  • be 25 or older at the time of confirmation (April 1st);
  • not have been accused of any felony for the last 15 years;
  • be legally sane;
  • have resided inside the electoral district for at least five years.

Confirmation[edit]

On April 1st, after the candidate has been elected, the High Councillor-elect are confirmed to the post via a public ceremony in which the oath of allegiance is uttered before the Perpetual High Councillors, in either Kalhan or English:

I, [full name], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend Kalșeri from all enemies, that I will bear allegiance to the Charter, that I will express the needs of my people before my own, and that I will perform the duties bestowed to me faithfully, consciously and professionally. So help me God, and may He smite me if that ain't true!

The last sentence may be omitted, and the High Councillor-elect is given the option to swear on either a copy of the Bible or a copy of the Charter.

After the oath, the High Councillor-elect, now a full-fledged High Councillor, is invited to attend a brief conference held by the High Summoner, explaining how the High Council works and reminding the rights and duties of a High Councillor; the conference is then followed by a State Luncheon, a tour of the High Council building for newcomers, and then the welcoming ceremony.

Suspension and expulsion[edit]

The High Summoner may suspend or expel a High Councillor. Suspension, applied motu proprio and after concrete instances of unparliamentary behavior, is far more common than expulsion, and applies for the rest of the day's sitting.

Expulsion is traditionally applied after a High Councillor has been suspended seven times, and is applicable to the rest of the current legislature. To expel a High Councillor, the High Summoner announces an emergency vote on the matter; a two-thirds majority of the High Councillors present in the chamber is required for the expulsion to take effect.

Until 1996, the Charter also contemplated invalidation, defined as "a permanent expulsion from the High Council". Invalidation of a High Councillor required a unanimous vote, and could be achieved for several reasons, such as:

  • the incriminated High Councillor introduced weapons of any kind capable to kill a person in the High Council room;
  • the incriminated High Councillor maimed or killed a colleague, the High Summoner or the President, or threatened to do so;
  • the incriminated High Councillor uttered a disloyal or otherwise extremely inappropriate statement;
  • the incriminated High Councillor performed an act contrary to moral decency.

Invalidation has only been applied once, in 1977, when High Councillor Frank Settarino Jr. threatened to kill President Raimund Terșet, as a means to end the controversy around the bribes by Lockheed, and brought his own Beretta 92, reloading it.