Speaker Rand Discusses Personal Story, Senate Priorities, and More in Exclusive Interview
The Speaker speaks.
Written by Pland Adanna
The Europeian Broadcasting Corporation sat down to interview Speaker Rand, whose proposals and passion have shaped much of Europeia’s political discourse in the past few weeks.
Could you give a brief history of your time in Europeia?
Rand: I first joined Europeia in 2012, but I didn't get involved much at all. I really joined Europeia in 2015. My early days were marked by some crazy schemes like the Europeian Imperialist Party, which was supposed to promote us colonizing other regions, though at the time I had zero knowledge of R/D mechanics. It was then that I lost my first CA Chair election to Kuramia, but I soon rebounded with a Minister of the Interior appointment by President Writinglegend, in what I think was his second term ever. Gleg was a real mentor of mine, he also helped me train up to become a Justice of the High Court. HEM was another person who always believed in me, and gave me multiple opportunities such as Director of the Civil Service and Minister of Orientation without Portfolio. I spent many terms in the Senate, always battling with my arch-rival Aexnidaral. We drove each other crazy, but in hindsight it was a lot of fun. Eventually, I did get a chance to serve a term as Speaker, after a Christmas break fought hard campaigning for the role. Since then, I have served in many roles such as Attorney General and Justice, but I think the Senate has always been my home.
What inspired you to return to Europeian politics and run for Senate? What is your favorite part about serving in the Senate?
Rand: I can't quite pinpoint it. I was a bit bored with my day job, feeling nostalgic, and saw a need for leadership with the current activity trend. So, I decided to run! I love tinkering with legal mumbo jumbo, and more importantly, helping set the long-term direction of the region through legislation.
What do you see as the Senate’s role in Europeia? I'd also love to hear your thoughts on the appropriate relationship and balance of power between the Senate and the People's Assembly.
Rand: I would say, at a very high level, the Senate's role is to serve the region through long-term planning, establishing guardrails for the government, and standing up for the will of the People in between election seasons.
I see the People's Assembly as somewhat lacking direction right now. It's not really clear if it's supposed to be a legislative training ground or a more organized Grand Hall. I have always been a champion of education in the region, having lead the Law Clerks program multiple times as Attorney General, and having made multiple attempts to facilitate Senate Aide programs. I definitely see the need for legal education, and I want other people to have the same opportunities I had. That's why I brought forward the Bar Association proposal. I also support creating routes for newcomers to become involved, as I've pushed through past work in executive Integration roles and even Presidential runs. However, I do not see a need for popular involvement in legislation. It's a very slow moving part of our region, and I think there's plenty of existing ways to ensure popular input (Grand Hall, petitions, referenda, etc.). So, as a newcomer engagement program, I think the PA is lacking a bit, and as a legislative mechanism, I don't currently see the need. I support initiatives such as the PA at a higher level, but the current form is lacking distinction in my opinion. The Senate should absolutely be responsive to the People, but I don't think the People's Assembly has the teeth to make that happen in a more meaningful way.
You have proposed many structural reforms to the Europeian government recently, from approval voting and rotating Senate seats to a Circuit Court and a Bar Association. What inspired you to push for these reforms? Why do you believe Europeia should consider reform beyond what is strictly necessary?
Rand: I already talked a bit about the Bar Association. I believe very strongly in education, and I think this is the best way to achieve legal education in our region. Regarding the Circuit Court, I think it's a way to improve more junior-ish level involvement in the legal system. There might be lots of appeals from it, but that's perhaps sort of the point. I expect quality work out of the Circuit Court, but also increased engagement. With regards to rotating Senate seats, again I think it's a way to increase engagement. Elections are the lifeblood of our region. Elections are how the people make their will known. We shouldn't be shying away from elections. In all, I am a big fan of experimentation. We'll never truly know if an idea will have positive effects until we give it a try. Our people have enough collective will and smarts to correct course if an idea isn't going so well.
What role do you think the Senate should play in the preparation for and implementation of changes regarding the looming Frontier/Stronghold update?
Rand: On the topic of Frontier/Stronghold, I think we've already played a big role in calling for the implementation of this referendum. The previous Senate set up some guardrails for this scenario in the Frontier/Stronghold Act, but that Act had a clear, potential vulnerability. So, we stepped in and fixed it. That's the core of what the Senate does. Going forward, we're going to continue to monitor the health of whatever path the region chooses, support the executive in successfully implementing it, and making long-term plans for how to best navigate this new gameplay landscape.
What do you hope to see from the Senate moving forward? What should be its top priorities?
Rand: Moving forward in the Senate, I hope to see more innovation and more engagement. Our last election was, no offense, very disappointing. I want to see people excited about the Senate and about trying out new ideas. I want to see people excited about our most collaborative branch of government. Hopefully, we can promote activity and engagement with some of these upcoming changes, and build the next generation of legal minds and forward-thinkers. That's what Europeia is. Each generation, each term, is laying down building blocks for the next. I am honored that I have been chosen to carry one of the torches, so to speak, for this period.