Frequently Asked Questions

Who is a member of PA-PAC?

A:

Every member of the People’s Alliance is automatically a member of the PAC. Go to www.durhampa.org/become_a_member to learn about how you can join PA.

Can anyone join the People’s Alliance and participate in the PAC endorsement process?

A:

Yes and no.  People’s Alliance and People’s Alliance PAC are organizations firmly guided by a progressive mission.  Only persons who in good conscience are able to subscribe to the Vision Statement of the People’s Alliance should join People’s Alliance and participate in the business of PA PAC.  Go to www.durhampa.org/vision_statement to read the PA Vision Statement.

Who may attend a PAC endorsement meeting?

A:

Every member of the PAC who has paid his or her annual dues to the People’s Alliance may attend a PAC endorsement meeting.  Go to www.durhampa.org/become_a_member to learn about how you can join PA.

I am a lapsed PA member, may I pay my dues at the door of an PAC endorsement meeting and then attend?

A:

Yes, please come to the meeting, pay your dues at the door, and attend the meeting.

I have never been a member of PA, may I come to the PAC endorsement meeting and join at the door?

A:

Yes.  New members who join for the first time at an endorsement meeting may attend the meeting and participate in debate, but they may not vote at that meeting. Please see the next question and its answer.  Go to www.durhampa.org/become_a_member to learn about how you can join PA.

Who may vote at a PA-PAC endorsement meeting?

A:

Anyone who has been a member for more than 30 days may vote at a PAC endorsement meeting.  This applies even to members whose memberships had lapsed, but who renew their memberships at the door of the endorsement meeting.  Only persons who have joined PA for the first time during the 30 days preceding the meeting may not vote at that meeting – however, they may attend the meeting and participate in debate.  They may vote at the next endorsement meeting and every endorsement meeting thereafter if they pay their PA dues.

I am a PA member, but I can’t attend the PAC endorsement meeting, may I vote by proxy or absentee ballot?

A:

No.  The PAC endorsement process is deliberative.  Only eligible members who attend the meeting and are present for the debate may vote.

May candidates attend a PA-PAC endorsement meeting?

A:

Yes, if they are members of the People’s Alliance.  Under the PAC bylaws, however, candidates and members of their immediate families are excluded from the portion of the meeting during which endorsement decisions concerning their own races are debated and decided.  Candidates who are not PA members often come to the meeting to meet and talk with PA members before meeting begins.  These candidates are welcome, but unless they join PA, they may not stay in the meeting hall after the meeting has begun.

Will I get to speak at the meeting?

A:

Yes.  Every member who wishes to speak at a PA PAC endorsement meeting will be given an opportunity to do so.  The coordinators who preside at the meeting may reasonably regulate debate, but the PAC’s rules and long-standing traditions encourage everyone who has something to add to the endorsement debate to speak and be heard.

I strongly support one candidate in the upcoming elections. I have donated to her campaign and I have volunteered to help her. May I still attend the PA PAC endorsement meeting?

A:

Yes you may.  PA members are active in the political life of the community.  It is expected that some members will be involved in candidates’ political campaigns.  Making political donations and volunteering to help a candidate does not disqualify a member from participating at a PAC endorsement meeting.  PA PAC bylaws do require that a member who is a candidate’s campaign manager or treasurer or otherwise in a candidate’s close inner circle disclose this relationship before participating in debate.

Is what happens at a PA-PAC endorsement meeting secret?

A:

No; however, PAC bylaws require that members allow PAC coordinators 24 hours to notify candidates and the press of the PAC’s endorsement decisions.  The bylaws also state that members must not attribute statements made during the meeting to identified persons when discussing what happened with persons who were not there.

How is PA-PAC governed?

A:

The PAC is governed by bylaws adopted by the membership and amended from time to time.  The PAC’s business is electoral politics.  Under the PAC bylaws, only the membership can make endorsement decisions.  The membership elects coordinators to promote the election of candidates endorsed by the membership and otherwise administer the business of the PAC.  PA PAC coordinators may not support or promote a candidate not endorsed by the PAC membership.