It should not come as a surprise that the Roman Republic governs itself by appealing to the members for their opinions. Nearly every operating procedure (lex) and officer (magistrate) of our community is voted upon.
Elections in the Roman Republic are modelled upon the ancient Republic. We believe this strikes a good balance between granting the greatest stakeholders (donors, and most active participants) greater say over the direction of our community.
There are three types of general elections open to citizen members.
I) Elections held by the Comitia Centuriata
II) Elections held by the Comitia Tributa
III) Elections held by the Concilium Plebis
Let’s talk about these in more detail.
I. Comitia Centuriata
The comitia centuriata is an assembly designed to give greater say those who participate with greater frequency or with greater value to the Roman Republic community. Participation is measured in denarii.
A voting unit within the Comitia Centuriata is a century. During an election, all votes cast within a century are totalled. The will of the majority within a given century determines how that century votes. Each century collectively casts one vote. Depending on the number of citizens with Optimo Iure status the number of centuries varies. The maximum possible is 190. Since the founding of the modern Roman Republic this number has been around 20 to 50 depending on the year. Each century is named by a simple number, such as Century I, Century II, Century III etc.
Not every century has the same number of people assigned to it. The lower the century number the less citizens assigned to it. The lower the century number the greater the denarii requirements needed in order to be assigned. Therefore, lower centuries contain more active citizens and their vote is less diluted.
The Comitia Centuriata is called at least annually to elect key administrators (magistrates) of the Roman Republic. These are; Consuls (Managers), Praetors (Associate Managers), Censors (Secretaries).
II. Comitia Tributa
The comitia centuriata is an assembly designed to give greater say those who donated to the Roman Republic over the last year and to represent regional interests across the mebership. Therefore, ones Donation/Tax Class and place of residence is measured within the Comitia Tributa.
A voting unit within the Comitia Tributa is a tribe. During an election, all votes cast within a tribe are totalled. The will of the majority within a given tribe determines how that tribe votes. Each tribe collectively casts one vote. The number of tribes is fixed at 35. These tribes are named by both a Roman numeral and name (corresponding to an ancient Roman Tribe of the Comitia Tributa).
These tribes are: I (Suburana)*, II (Palatina)*a, III (Esquilina)*b, IV (Collina)*c, V (Romilia)°a, VI (Voltinia)°b, II (Voturia)°a, VIII (Aemilia)°c, IX (Horatia)°a, X (Maecia)°b, XI (Scaptia)°a, XII (Pomptina)°b, XIII (Falerna)°a, XIV (Lemonia)°b, XV (Papiria)°b, XVI (Oufentina)°b, XVII (Teretina)°b, XVIII (Pupinia)°a, XIX (Menenia)°b, XX (Poblilia)°a, XXI (Cornelia)°a, XXII (Claudia)°b, XXIII (Camilia)°a, XXIV (Aniensis)°b, XXV (Fabia)°a, XXVI (Pollia)°b, XXVII (Sergia)°a, XXVIII (Clustumina)°b, XXIX (Quirina)°a, XXX (Velina)°a, XXXI (Stellatina)°a, XXXII (Tromentina)°b, XXXIII (Galeria)°a, XXXIV (Sabatina)°b, XXXV (Arnensis)°b.
*= urban tribe, °=rural tribe, a= Reserved for Europe, b=Reserved for North America & Australia/NZ, c=Reserved for the rest of the world
There are two types of tribes – rural tribes and urban tribes.
Only citizens who made a class IV, III, II or I donation over a census period are assigned to rural tribes. Fewer citizens are assigned to each rural tribe. Therefore, those who donated generously are more represented. Which rural tribe one is assigned depends on their place of residence (Europe, North America-Australia, or elsewhere).
Citizens who made a class V donation (lower donation), or no donation (class VI) are assigned to urban tribes. There are more citizens assigned to these tribes and therefore greater dilution of individual votes compared to those assigned to rural tribes.
Citizens who optimo iure or incensus are assigned to I (Suburana). This tribe contains even more citizens and is where the greatest dilution of voting power occurs.
The Comitia Tributa is called at least annually to elect key administrators (magistrates) of the Roman Republic. These are; Curule Aediles (Event Planners) and Quaestors (Administrative Assistants).
III. Concilium Plebis
The composition of the Concilium Plebis is identical to the Comitia Tributa with one major difference. All citizens who are members of the ordo patricius are excluded from voting.
This assembly is very powerful in that it can veto the actions of any magistrate or the Comitia Tributa and Comitia Centuriata. This occurs through ratifying the veto of a Plebeian Tribune.
The Concilium Plebis is called at least annually to elect key administrators (magistrates) of the Roman Republic. These are; Plebeian Aediles (Event Planners) and Plebeian Tribunes (Membership Advocates).