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Member making motion required to vote?

Deb Parm

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7 minutes ago, Deb Parm said:

I have a board member telling me that since she made the motion, her vote is automatically in favor. I am pretty sure that isn't right, but I can't find anything in Robert's Rules to back me up.

"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)."  RONR (11th ed.), p. 393 emphasis added by me.

She may also abstain.


Edited by George Mervosh
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Just now, Deb Parm said:

I just want to have this clear in my mind. I am wrong, and the member making the motion doesn't need to actually vote and it is assumed to be a 'yes' vote?

Your initial thoughts were correct.  The member making the motion can vote in favor of it, against it, or not at all.  They just can't speak against their own motion.

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39 minutes ago, Deb Parm said:

it is assumed to be a 'yes' vote?

Well, you know what it means when you assume something.  ;)

I wouldn't make that assumption.  First, there may be cases where everyone is against the motion but it is necessary for someone to make the motion so the assembly can go on record in overwhelmingly voting it down.  Also, while the member may originally be in favor of the motion through debate he or she may be convinced the motion isn't such a good idea after all.

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