Request to read papers

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

The motion to request to read papers is used to allow a member of a deliberative assembly to read from a paper, book, manuscript, newspaper, or other document as part of his speech.

Explanation and Use[edit]

Grant permission to read papers (RONR)
Class Incidental motion
In order when another has the floor? If not granted by unanimous consent, can be moved by person requesting permission or by another while the former has the floor
Requires second? Yes, if motion is made by person requesting permission; no, if made by another member
Debatable? No
May be reconsidered? Yes
Amendable? No
Vote required: Majority

Normally, this motion is handled as a matter of unanimous consent.[1] The reason for requiring this motion to be made is to prevent such readings from being done as a dilatory tactic. Under Demeter's Manual, by default, a member can read from such documents, but must stop if an objection is made, seconded, and adopted by majority vote. Referring to one's notes does not constitute reading, and the reading of written or printed reports of officers or committees from paper, yearbook, etc. is not subject to such objection.[2] Mason's Manual of Legislative Procedure states:[3]

A member has no right to read, or have the clerk read, from any paper or book, or to use any electronic recording as a part of a speech, without the permission of the body. However, this rule is never rigorously enforced except where there is an intentional or gross abuse of the time and patience of the body. It is customary, however, to allow members to read printed extracts as part of their speeches, as long as they do not abuse the privilege. Members do not have the right to read their own written speeches, without permission of the body. This also is to prevent the abuse of time, and therefore should not be refused except where the privilege is abused. Members are entitled to speak from notes.


  1. ^ Robert, Henry M. (2000). Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, 10th ed., p. 286
  2. ^ Demeter, George (1969). Demeter's Manual of Parliamentary Law and Procedure, Blue Book, p. 143
  3. ^ National Conference of State Legislatures (2000). Mason's Manual of Legislative Procedure, 2000 ed., p. 90–91