Reconsidering a Motion

Is there a change of mind about a matter that was voted upon? It's possible to reconsider a motion, with some important cautions: If your group's or organization's meeting takes place in one day (or less), the motion to reconsider must be made the same day.

Members who are in a convention or session can reconsider during the next day. Has more time elapsed? Then members should use the motion to rescind or amend something previously adopted. Finally, if the motion has been defeated at a previous meeting, members can always think about renewing a motion by changing it and reintroducing it to the membership as new business.

ESSENTIAL

If too much time elapsed and it's too late to reconsider a motion, action on the motion will proceed unless the membership decides to make a motion to rescind or amend something previously adopted.

Which Side Were You On?

Because the motion to reconsider keeps all other business at a standstill until it's taken care of, in order to prevent its being used by a member to cause problems, only a member who voted on the prevailing side will be allowed to introduce it. The chair must ask the member if she was on the prevailing side if the member doesn't state this in her request.

Making the Motion

If a member wants to make a motion to reconsider, he should say, “I move to reconsider the vote on the motion to [do such-and-such]. I voted on the prevailing side.” Another member needs to second the motion. Then the chair should ask if there is any discussion on reconsidering the vote. After discussion (if any), a new vote will be taken.

The motion is debatable if the type of motion it reconsiders is debatable. It can't be reconsidered (actually, that would be re-reconsidering it, wouldn't it?). (See Appendix B for the list of debatable and nondebatable motions.) If adopted, the original motion is put before the membership as if there had never been a vote upon it previously.

FACT

The motion to reconsider cannot be made if the original motion has been carried out (or partially carried out), if something can't be redone, if some other motion can get the same result, or if something like a contract has been made with another party or a notification has been made to a member or someone outside the group or organization.

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