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Committees. That A. take the chair,
That the House do now resolve into a
committee, Speaker. That he now leave the chair,
after order to go into committee, That he issue warrant for a new visit, Member. That none be absent without leave,
Witness. That he be farther examined, Ayes. 344
Blanks. That they be filled with the
Amendments. That words stand part of,
Messenger be received,
Orders of the day to be now read, if Ayes. before 2 o'clock,
If after 2 o'clock,
Adjournment till the next sitting day,
If after 4 o'clock,
Over a sitting day, (unless a previous
Over the 30th January,
For sitting on Sunday, or any other day, not being a sitting day,
The one party being gone forth, the Speaker names two tellers from the affirmative, and two from the negative side, who first count those sitting in the House, and report the number to the Speaker. Then they place themselves within the door, two on each side, and count those who went forth, as they come in, and report the number to the Speaker.-Mem. in Hakew. 26.
A mistake in the report of the tellers may be rectified after the report made.-2 Hats. 145. Note.
But, in both Houses of Congress, all those intricacies are avoided The ayes first rise, and are counted, standing in their places, by the President or Speaker. Then they sit, and the noes rise and re counted in like manner.
In Senate, if they be equally divided, the Vice-President announces his opinion, which decides.
The Constitution, however, has directed that " the members of either House, on any question, shall, at the desire of ❤ne-fifth of those present, be entered on the journal.” And again, tha
in all cases of re-considering a bill disapproved by the President, auc returned with his objections, "the votes of both Houses shall be determined by the yeas and nays, and the names of the persons voting for and against the bill, shall be entered on the journals of each House respectively."
By the 16th and 17th rules of the Senate, when the yeas and nays ehali be called for by one-fifth of the members present, each member called upon shall, unless for special reasons he be excused by the Senate, declare openly, and without debate, his assent or dissent to the question. In taking the yeas and nays, and upon the call of the House, the names of the members shall be taken alphabetically.
When the yeas and nays shall be taken upon any question, in pur suance of the above rule, no member shall be permitted, under any circumstances whatever, to vote after the decision is announced from the chair.
When it is proposed to take a vote by yeas and nays, the President or Speaker states that "The question is whether, e. g., the bill shal、 pass? That it is proposed that the yeas and nays shall be entered on the journal. Those, therefore, who desire it will rise." If he finds and declares that one-fifth have risen, he then states, that "those who are of opinion that the bill shall pass, are to answer in the affirmative, those of the contrary opinion, in the negative." The clerk then calls over the names alphabetically, notes the yea or nay of each, anc gives the list to the President or Speaker, who declares the result. I Senate, if there be an equal division, the Secretary calls on the Vice President, who notes his affirmative or negative, which becomes the decision of the House.
In the House of Commons, every member must give his vote the one way or the other.-Scob. 24. As it is not permitted to any one to withdraw who is in the House when the question is put, nor is any one to be told in the division who was not in when the question. was put.-2 Hats. 140.
This last position is always true when the vote is by yeas and nays; where the negative as well as the affirmative of the question is stated by the President
at the same time, and the vote of both sides begins and proceeds pari passu. It is true, also, when the question is put in the usual way, if the negative has also been put. But if it has not, the member entering, or any other member may speak, and even propose amendments, by which the debate may be opened again, and the question greatly deferred. And, as some who have answered ay, may have been changed by the new arguments, the affirmative must be put over again. If, then, the member entering may, by speaking a few words, occasion a repetition of the question, it would be useless to deny it on his simple call for it.
While the House is telling, no member may speak, or move out of his place; for, if any mistake be suspected, it must be told again. Mem. in Hakew. 26; 2 Hats. 143.
If any difficulty arises in point of order, during the division, the Speaker is to decide peremptorily, subject to the future censure of the House, if irregular. He sometimes permits old experienced members to assist him with their advice, which they do sitting in their seats, covered to avoid the appearance of debate; but this can only be with the Speaker's leave, else the division might last several hours.-2 Hats. 143.
The voice of the majority decides. For the lex majoris partis is the law of all councils, elections, &c., where not otherwise expressly provided.-Hakew. 93. But if the House be equally divided, "semper presumatur pro negante:" that is, the former law is not to be changed but by a majority.—Towns. col. 134.
But, in the Senate of the United States, the Vice-President decides, when the House is divided.-Const. U. S., Art. I. Sec. 2.
When, from counting the House, on a division, it appears that there is not a quorum, the matter con
tinues exactly in the state in which it was before the division, and must be resumed at that point on any future day.-2 Hats. 126.
1606, May 1, on a question whether a member having said Yea, may afterwards sit and change his opinion? a precedent was remembered by the Speaker, of Mr. Morris, attorney of the wards, in 39 Eliz., who in like case changed his opinion. - Mem. in Hakew. 27.
AFTER the bill has passed, and not before, the title may be amended, and is to be fixed by a question; and the bill is then sent to the other House
WHEN a question has been once made and carried in the affirma tive or negative, it shall be in order for any member of the majority to move for the re-consideration thereof; but no motion for the reconsideration of any vote shall be in order after a bill, resolution, message, report, amendment, or motion, upon which the vote was taken, shall have gone out of the possession of the Senate, announcing their decision; nor shall any motion for re-consideration be in order. unless made on the same day on which the vote was taken, or within the two next days of actual session of the Senate thereafter.Rule 20.