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Henry M. Robert (1837–1923).  Robert’s Rules of Order Revised.  1915.


Page 178


42. Debate.

   In 1–6 are explained the necessary steps preliminary to debate — namely, that when no business is pending a member shall rise and address the chair by his title, and be recognized by the chair as having obtained the floor; and that the member shall then make a motion which, after being seconded, shall be stated by the chair, who shall then ask, “Are you ready for the question?” The question is then open to debate, as is partially explained in 7, which should be read in connection with this section. No member shall speak more than twice during the same day to the same question (only once on an appeal), nor longer than ten minutes at one time, without leave of the assembly; and the question upon granting the leave shall be decided by a two-thirds vote without debate. 37 No member can speak a second time to a question as long as any member desires to speak who has not spoken to the question. If greater freedom is desired, the proper course is to go into committee of the whole, or to consider it informally, either of which requires only a majority vote; or to extend the limits of debate [30],


Note 37.  The U. S. Constitution [Art. I, Sec. 5] provides that each House of Congress may, “with the concurrence of two-thirds, expel a member.” [back]

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