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Guest Chris

Reconsidering a motion and the prevailing side of a vote

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Guest Chris

RR states that to make a motion to reconsider a motion, one must have voted on the prevailing side regarding the original motion. If the vote for the original motion was blind, with nobody knowing for certain who voted one way or another, how is one to verify whether the individual making the motion to reconsider the motion actually was on the prevailing side of the original vote?

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"A member who voted by ballot may make the motion [to reconsider] if he is willing to waive the secrecy of his ballot." RONR (11th ed.), p. 316, ll. 1-2. The chair and assembly simply have to take the voter's word for it.

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RR states that to make a motion to reconsider a motion, one must have voted on the prevailing side regarding the original motion. If the vote for the original motion was blind, with nobody knowing for certain who voted one way or another, how is one to verify whether the individual making the motion to reconsider the motion actually was on the prevailing side of the original vote?

Presumably the person making the motion knows for certain how he voted. He should state that fact when making the motion, or the chair should inquire. Unless there is evidence to the contrary, the chair would have no reason not to accept his word.

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RR states that to make a motion to reconsider a motion, one must have voted on the prevailing side regarding the original motion. If the vote for the original motion was blind, with nobody knowing for certain who voted one way or another, how is one to verify whether the individual making the motion to reconsider the motion actually was on the prevailing side of the original vote?

It's the honor system. People often shutter at the thought of this, but keep in mind that when the vote is taken by voice, there is no real way to verify how an individual member voted, anyway.

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No point of order can be raised based upon a claim that the member is lying.

The member might not be lying. He might simply not know the rule. It seems that someone who was sitting next to him when he voted, could validly consider that the rules of order are not being followed (without implying that the member is lying). Of course, I don't know how a majority of the assembly could possibly know how a single member voted (unless he stood up and shook his fist in the air while hollering "No!").

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The initial question assumed a "blind" - I assume that means secret or ballot - vote. So there is nothing to go by other than the voter's word. The presiding office is free to ask "How did the member vote" (reference someone? I can't spot it easily but "I know it is there"), so the voter can't claim he didn't know (by implication) the rule.

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The member might not be lying. He might simply not know the rule. It seems that someone who was sitting next to him when he voted, could validly consider that the rules of order are not being followed (without implying that the member is lying). Of course, I don't know how a majority of the assembly could possibly know how a single member voted (unless he stood up and shook his fist in the air while hollering "No!").

Well, I thought we were talking about a ballot vote, but anyway, look at page 330, lines 34-36.

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