To assure that a random selection could afford to participate, the law must secure to the delegates certain privileges.
Delegatesshould be paid from the Treasury at a rate that equals 150%of their current income,
capped at some reasonable level;their expenses to attend the convention, including addi-tional home-care expenses, should be provided as well; thelaw should secure protection for the jobs those delegatesmust leave, by compensating employers to save the jobs of the delegates. These privileges need to be generous enoughto make it possible for a random selection to participate.But like the draft to serve in the military, the excuses forbeing exempted from this service should be few and strictly policed.3.
These citizen conventions should be conducted as a “deliberative poll.”
The procedures for constituting these conventionsshould form them on the model of Fishkin’s “deliberativepolling.” That system requires a careful process for selectingthe material that the delegates will be exposed to, and toassure the delegates come to understand the substance of the materials, and given a chance to deliberate about them. This process can be open, and observed by the general pub-lic. But the delegates themselves should be sequesteredfrom other individuals during the deliberation. The only source of influence that should be permitted is the influ-ence of one delegate on another.4.
The results of these citizen conventions should be transmitted toCongress, and Congress should vote on whether to adopt the proposals agreed upon.
For the process to be meaningful,delegates must believe their work will have consequence. The rules should therefore require that Congress to debatethe proposals that were agreed upon by the citizen conven-tions, and in a roll call vote, adopt them or not through aresolution. The process should be completed by July, 2014,to give the political process time to digest the results. The vote on the resolution should be conducted before thatelection.
The disruption of service, especially for modest earners, justifies a premium forservice.