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Call the question

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After a motion has been made and a second follows, the chair asks for discussion. After discussion has come to an end, and a person is recognized to speak, they announce "I call the question" does the membership have to move, second and vote on "calling the question"? Or do you just procede to the motion that was on the floor and vote?

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After someone has moved the Previous Question (which is the correct language) the assembly would vote on whether the pending question should be put to an immediate vote. If 2/3 are in favor of it then the pending question is put to a vote but if 2/3 are not in favor then the motion can be further considered. See RONR pp. 197-209.

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Must they vote? If he is reasonably sure there really is no more debate in the offing, the chair could respond by just saying:

"Thank you. If there is no more debate [ pause to allow someone to jump up, indicating they do want to debate ], we shall now vote on the motion to ..."

Sometimes someone will "jump up". If so explain that the previous question has been called for, then say "All those in favor of stopping debate and voting immediately, please rise....."

This may be slightly non-standard, but it is fair, and saves unnecessary votes on the initial call for the question.

Then, after the meeting, go and explain to the caller why "I call for the question" is unnecessary if there is nobody seeking recognition to debate.

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If 2/3 are in favor of it then the pending question is put to a vote but if 2/3 are not in favor then the motion can be further considered.

And what if the vote is 60/40? :)

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Then, after the meeting, go and explain to the caller why "I call for the question" is unnecessary if there is nobody seeking recognition to debate.

Or, better yet, give this explanation during the meeting. ;)

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Debate continues - there was not a two thirds majority. 60 is only 60% of 100 votes, not 67%

Remember: rhetorical questions require rhetorical answers.

And thank goodness there was not a "two thirds majority" or "67%," especially here on the world's premier parliamentary site. ;)

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Somehow I've managed to derail this thread, when all I was trying to do was give Chris H. a hard time about the wording of his answer in post #3. :)

My only point was that rejecting a motion for the Previous Question doesn't require two-thirds not in favor; it requires merely less than two-thirds in favor.

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Somehow I've managed to derail this thread, when all I was trying to do was give Chris H. a hard time about the wording of his answer in post #3. :)

My only point was that rejecting a motion for the Previous Question doesn't require two-thirds not in favor; it requires merely less than two-thirds in favor.

I think at least 2/3 of readers didn't not get your point, though fewer may have actually gotten it.

Anyway, it was an impressively effective derailment. ;)

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I'm pretty sure I didn't not get his point. :rolleyes:

I didn't not either, or at least it wasn't not my impression that I understood it when I read post #5 a few days ago :P .

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I realize this is an old thread but I wonder what would be the proper way to ask the chair to give the explanation during the meeting.   Would I make a Point of Order, a Point of Privilege or a Point of Information in order to ask the chair to remind members that it's unnecessary to Call the Previous Question as the chair can move directly to the vote (if there is no objection) without the question being called?  Or would I have to approach the chair outside of the meeting to ask him to do that?

 

We have a member who has become a nuisance by constantly raising his card to prematurely Call the Question while the chair is asking if anyone would like to speak against a motion/resolution.

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What if the debate has waned, but chair does not call for a vote on the motion.  So, then a member "calls the previous question" and the body votes and 2 vote no and 3 vote yes - 60%.  The call of the question has failed.  The chair asks for further discussion on the motion before the members.  No members have discussion.  The chair still does not call for a vote.  What next?  How to deal with the motion where the chair won't call for a vote and the members won't force a vote by 2/3 majority?

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15 minutes ago, Guest said:

What if the debate has waned, but chair does not call for a vote on the motion.  So, then a member "calls the previous question" and the body votes and 2 vote no and 3 vote yes - 60%.  The call of the question has failed.  The chair asks for further discussion on the motion before the members.  No members have discussion.  The chair still does not call for a vote.  What next?  How to deal with the motion where the chair won't call for a vote and the members won't force a vote by 2/3 majority?

First off, the Previous Question is not appropriate in such a small body.

If nobody wishes to speak to a motion, it is the chair's duty to put the question. What else is he going to do? Allow an awkward silence?

For future reference it's customary on this forum to start a new thread for a new question, even if an existing one seems relevant.

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20 hours ago, Guest said:

What if the debate has waned, but chair does not call for a vote on the motion.  So, then a member "calls the previous question" and the body votes and 2 vote no and 3 vote yes - 60%.  The call of the question has failed.  The chair asks for further discussion on the motion before the members.  No members have discussion.  The chair still does not call for a vote.  What next?  How to deal with the motion where the chair won't call for a vote and the members won't force a vote by 2/3 majority?

The proper course of action at that point would be to raise a Point of Order that, since no member is seeking recognition, the immediately pending motion is to be put to a vote. If the chair still does not cooperate, you may need to follow with an Appeal and/or the tools to deal with abuse of authority by the chairman during a meeting, as discussed in RONR, 11th ed., pgs. 650-653.

20 hours ago, Thomas Ralph said:

First off, the Previous Question is not appropriate in such a small body.

Says who?

20 hours ago, Thomas Ralph said:

What else is he going to do? Allow an awkward silence?

Apparently so.

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It might be good to reflect on the fact that a preferred method for the chair to ask whether there is any further debate is to ask, "Are you ready for the question?"

If no one seeks recognition at that point, the assumption is that the assembly is ready for the question, and the presiding officer, newly aware of this state of readiness, should put it--the question, that is.

You might try a Parliamentary Inquiry, asking whether there is anything at this point that he would like those in favor of the motion to say, such as, perhaps, "Aye"?  That might get him jump-started.

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16 hours ago, Josh Martin said:

Says who?

Perhaps I have slightly exceeded the remit of the footnote of p. 488 which says that "in meetings of a small board... occasions where [Limit/Extend Limits of Debate and Previous Questionare necessary or appropriate may be rarer than in larger assemblies".

As the chair is likely to be aware of who voted in the negative to the Previous Question, he should probably invite either of them to seek recognition as they seem to have more to say on the pending motion. I do like Mr. Novosielski's suggestion as to the parliamentary enquiry, though.

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On 11/13/2015 at 1:12 PM, Hieu H. Huynh said:

It would help to start a new thread on it.

Still, it was good to see David and Trina again, if only historically.  (HHH, are they from before your tenure here?+)

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