Three Quick Rules for Writing Effective Resolutions

Resolutions can become somewhat controversial within a local political party. It does not have to be the subject matter, any more than it may be the maker, to create the controversy. This is so, because resolutions are quickly perceived to be personal matters among rival groups and a resolution gives a rival a means to conduct a personal attack upon another member without violating rules of convention.

During debate of the resolution, the rival need only bring questions to mind to win loose allies away from defending the maker of the resolution. The more the words of the resolution, the more ammo is available to the opponent. Therefore, the most effective means to limiting attacks against any resolution is sticking to the point and keeping it short.

Stick to these rules and you will find the odds increasing for getting your resolutions passed. That is, as long as the general assembly is in agreement to the issue at hand.

1) Have at least 3 or 4 whereases which concisely explain the foundation, support and purpose of the resolution (who, what, when, where and why – as necessary). Beginning with the word “whereas,” every whereas should contain only one subject matter. Ideally, every whereas should be a one-sentence paragraph, ending with a semi-colon.

2) Keep the resolution pointed and concise. If possible, keep the resolution to only ONE Resolved. In no event, should the resolution be comprehensive – keep it to ONE point and keep it short. An effective resolution can be written in less than one page.

3) Follow the standard form as adopted by your group. Some groups follow Robert’s Rules of Order (Robert’s) to the “T.” While other groups have rules requiring the use of uppercase letters for the words “WHEREAS” AND “RESOLVED.” While Robert’s puts the “therefore” at the end of the last “whereas,” some forms require the resolved section to begin with “Therefore be it RESOLVED.” The important thing is to keep your form consistent with your group.

Stay on focus and get to work.

About the author: cominus

Cominus is the pen-name for Dean Isaacson. He was chairman of the Snohomish County Republican Central Committee (Washington) 1990 to 1992. He conducted legal research for the late Supreme Court Justice William C. Goodloe for several years and led Judicial Forum for many years. Now, he is a crazy kinda guy who spends most his time doing cold calls. He plays his harmonica in the truck because people don't want to listen to him practice - but his dog, Miles (black dachshund), loves to sing along. He is passionate about being passionate because everyone is really into passionate these days but tires easily and hides behind emails. His core belief is you will choose to serve God or you will serve the state - tyrants, as William Penn called it.

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