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Speaking against one's own motion


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1 hour ago, Larry J. Randle said:

Is there a more thorough technical explanation in RONR 11th edition beyond what is on page 393 (20-22) as to why a mover should not speak against their own motion? If so, can you please tell me where to find it or provide me with some bullet points as to why this is so? Thank you.

Larry, I'm not aware of anything else, but the statement on page 393 seems clear enough all by itself:

REFRAINING FROM SPEAKING AGAINST ONE'S OWN MOTION. In debate, the maker of a motion, while he can vote against it, is not allowed to speak against his own motion. He need not speak at all, but if he does he is obliged to take a favorable position. If he changes his mind while the motion he made is pending, he can, in effect, advise the assembly of this by asking permission to withdraw the motion (pp. 295–97).

As for a reason, the one provided by Dr. Kapur seems reasonable  enough.  It's good enough for me!

52 minutes ago, Atul Kapur said:

I've always understood that the purpose is to avoid wasting the assembly's time on a motion even the mover doesn't support.

 

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56 minutes ago, Richard Brown said:

As for a reason, the one provided by Dr. Kapur seems reasonable  enough.  It's good enough for me!

 

For me, too,  so far as the mover's first debate opportunity is concerned (and maybe the senond one, too, if the motion has not been amended). Where I have a problem is that the prohibition continues to apply even if the motion has been amended to be entirely different from the maker's intent. I know, of course, that the maker of the original motion can debate against the amendment, or ask permission to withdraw the motion, but those seem to me to be poor substitues for being able to debate against the amended motion. Nevertheless, that's the "black letter law," so my personal view doen't count. I suppose an oganization could adopt a special rule of order allowing the maker to debate against the motion under specified circumstances (or even without restriction if that's what they want to do), but unless they do, the prohibition stands.

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10 hours ago, Weldon Merritt said:

For me, too,  so far as the mover's first debate opportunity is concerned (and maybe the senond one, too, if the motion has not been amended). Where I have a problem is that the prohibition continues to apply even if the motion has been amended to be entirely different from the maker's intent. . . . 

I share Mr. Merritt's concern on that point. The motion, as amended, no longer proposes to do what the original mover intended. To my way of thinking, the motion has become a different question.

Edited by Richard Brown
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1 hour ago, Richard Brown said:

To my way of thinking, the motion has become a different question.

I just caution about using that terminology. Saying that an amendment makes it a different question also implies that members who spoke twice to the main motion before the amendment should be allowed two other opportunities to debate the now-amended main motion. Which is not correct, as I recall.

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