A Typical Debate

A typical debate of a resolution can last from one to two hours. It begins with the delegates reading over the resolution, either on the data projector screen or a paper copy. Then the chair will call the house to order and ask the main submitter of the resolution to take the floor. “Taking the floor” means coming up to the podium to speak. The main submitter of the resolution then reads the operative clauses (see Resolution Writing) out loud. Then a debate time is set, and the main submitter gives a speech. At this point, the speaker has the option to open themselves to take questions, or ‘Points of Information’, from the other delegates about the resolution and their speech. After the speaker has finished answering the delegates, other delegates can take the floor to speak for or against the resolution, or to submit amendments (suggested changes to the resolution), which are then debated. Once time runs out, or delegates feel that there is nothing left in the resolution to improve, the resolution is voted upon.