During Sargon's Acting Presidency in 2007 and 2008 he instituted the so-called Sargon Doctrine, a policy to settle international arguments over disputed territories by simply annexing the areas concerned in the name of AH.com. This would lead to the formation of the AH.com Commonwealth, better known as the AH.com Territories. Although the 2007 Parliament discussed the Resolution authorizing Invasions of Poland, Ireland, Mexico, and the Baltic States on the basis of the Sargon Doctrine, this bill is the first directly dealing the territories themselves.
On March 4, 2009, Vice President Thande (YSP) suggested that Parliament consider “an East India Bill-type proposal for a parliamentary colonial oversight committee, given all these unilateral presidential annexations of various countries”. Susano (FFF) agreed, although he would also fall under the oversight of such a committee, and asked Thande to submit a draft bill as “it would be good if YSP and a Vice President would lead the move.”
VulcanTrekkie45 (YSP) offered to sponsor the bill on Thande's behalf, adding: “It makes good sense to have a single administrative system over all the colonies, and since I am not in charge of any AH.com territory, I would not have direct vested interest in the bill's passage or failure.”
Vice President Thande submitted a draft of the bill, titled the “Colonial Oversight Committee Bill”: “…which would create a Parliamentary committee to review annexations of regions by the presidential executive and, if necessary, make recommendations for moves towards decolonisation and nation-building in the cases of those colonies seen as too great a drain on the AH.com treasury.”
Susano (FFF) urged Thande to consider writing another, more formal, draft, stating: “We have since the first legislature period to writing out bills. I know this used to be different, apparently, but, well, the first Landsraad bill failed because of lacking formulation…” Thande agreed and shortly afterward submitted a new draft.
09camaro (E) pointed out several issues he had with the draft. In Article II, he argued: “The power to veto such decisions and establishments should be held by those territories alone. It would be the power of the committee to ensure that the President does not put forth such an order so that this would have to take place to begin with. In addition, the committee should attempt to convey the intention of the presidential decisions to the territories so that there is no confusion between the leadership and the territories. This would ensure that, not only do we retain our territories, but might indeed grant additional ones to our sphere of influence.” In regards to Article III, he added: “How would we ensure that this committee does not force officials out of their position for no reason other than to fully incorporate the territories? Without some sort of balance, the temptation to commit any form of atrocity in the territories inflates exponentially.” On Article IV he said: “This could also prove to be very temptuous. What if the commissioner decides that the territory is useless? and that an ethnic cleansing must commence? This atrocity would be awful for the empire and the territory itself. Or what if the territory is too valuable and the people of the territory are a threat to our sovereignty. What if the commissioner deems the territory in need of more industry… completely ruining the landscape?” Finally, he stated: “I like the concept very much. however I feel as though there is not enough… sustenance… to provide the necessary precautions for the well-being of the territories (including your own) while at the same time limiting the size of the government so as to grant as many liberties to the territories as possible.”
Susano (FFF) questioned 09camaro's call to grant veto power to the Territories, asking “How, pray tell, is that supposed to work? And how would “full incoproration of the territories” work, for that matter?” He rejected the criticisms: “I am sorry to say, but your arguments make little sense in the way of AH.com reality…”
09camaro (E) defended his position, explaining that when he said “by holding the veto” he “meant the right to oppose the decisions of the President” and that “this would be granted to the minister of the territory… like in your case, you would be able to veto the decisions of the President… or rather, refuse to accept them until the committee vetoes the decision itself. Full incorporation would be enforced by removing the administer of the territories and bringing them directly under the jurisdiction of the President.”
Susano (FFF) retorted that he was one of the officials in question and “Theoretically, we're all appointed by the President, so us holding a veto right against him would be… odd. Also it would turn territories into personal fiefs. Tempting, but…”
BE IT ENACTED that:
1) A Colonial Oversight Committee shall be established, compromised of four Members of Parliament, elected by Parliament, and including representatives from both the government and at least one opposition party;
2) The Colonial Oversight Commitee shall have the power to veto presidential establishments of AH.Com Territories, and to veto personal decisions in them;
3) The Colonial Oversight Committee shall have the power to recall any official of the AH.Com Territories;
4) The Colonial Oversight Committee may name Imperial Commissars to review the status of any particular AH.com Territory if deemed necessary.
Voting on this bill began on March 4, 2009 and ended on March 11, 2009.
This bill received 4 votes in favor and 4 votes against, with an additional 7 MPs not voting. Since it was unable to meet the criteria for passage outlined in either Article I or Article II Section 2 of the Legislative Procedures Act, it was declared Failed when voting ended on March 11.