- What does the expression table it mean?
- What does it mean when an agenda item is tabled?
- What does it mean to table a paper?
In the United States, to “table” usually means to postpone or suspend consideration of a pending motion. In the rest of the English-speaking world, to “table” means to begin consideration (or reconsideration) of a proposal.
This really happened: A local government body agreed to “table” an item until the next meeting. When a pending matter is tabled correctly, it is set aside with no provision for bringing it back at any specific time. In this case, it requires a subsequent motion to take it from the table.
Why are documents ‘tabled’? During a sitting of the House, any MP (except for the Speaker) or a Minister may ask to table a document. In the literal sense this means a document is placed on the table that sits in the centre of the debating chamber, before being made available to all MPs.