Unmoderated and Moderated CaucusDuring ordinary session a delegate can motion the chair for a short break in debating in order to informally discuss a topic, otherwise known as caucusing. The delegate specifies which type of caucus he is petitioning for, either a moderated or an unmoderated caucus. A moderated caucus can be a very good way to break from the more formal debate and form a new short speaker’s list to discuss a specific issue (like an amendment or a controversial part of the resolution). In a moderated caucus delegates don’t get the floor for unlimited time, nor do they get to entertain points of information. Instead, it is a way to form a short speaker’s list for a limited time period so that several delegates can voice their opinion about a subject and hopefully quickly move to consensus or move to a vote afterwards. In a moderated caucus, the chair (if she grants the motion) sets up the speaker list and limits time. She usually asks the inquiring delegate if she would like to be the first to speak. This is a good way to get a chance to talk if the normal speaker’s list is long and the delegate will not have a chance to talk for some time (a strategic reason to call for a short moderated caucus). Delegates stay seated and the chair calls on them to speak one at a time for a set number of minutes (at the discretion of the chair). This helps all delegates who want to participate and speak out during the moderated caucus get their points across to the whole assembly, and is a great opportunity if the delegate wishes to make an important point(s) that she thinks will affect the opinion of the other delegates on the topic.An unmoderated caucus is called for when a delegate feels that there is some issue that likely won’t get solved under the strict format of formal debate and parliamentary procedure and this issue might be keeping a consensus from being reached. In this case, a motion for an unmoderated caucus can be quite effective, because then delegates are able to converse and debate freely, lobby allies and opponents, work out differences, re-word an amendment, etc. In the case of an unmoderated caucus, a delegate motions for an unmoderated caucus and, after approval from the chair, delegates can get up and talk freely amongst themselves (about issues relevant to the topic) sharing ideas how to resolve the issue in a slightly more informal setting, writing amendments or draft resolutions, and seeking support from nations to achieve the delegates goals in representing his or her country. The unmoderated caucus is sometimes abused by delegates who want a break from meetings. Because of this, the chair will not allow delegates to leave the meeting room during an unmoderated caucus.
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