whip removed
Posted: 04 September 2019 07:02 AM   [ Ignore ]
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I note that Churchill’s grandson is having the “whip removed” because he voted with the 21 Tory rebels in Tuesday’s vote on Brexit’s “no deal.”

What that means, I guess, that he is thrown out of the party. Apart from questions about what happens to him and his party affiliation, I just wonder about the etymology of the “Whip” and its “removal.”

Some sites note that it has origin of the whip is in foxhunting. I didn’t they used whips in foxhunting.

We have “Whips” here in the US government, but they don’t have the power to toss folks out of the party. They just try to keep their party members in line and vote the party line. They cannot “remove the whip” and I still don’t understand what that could possibly mean much less the etymology of the phrase, if I could phrase it that way.

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Posted: 04 September 2019 07:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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I would take it to mean that he was the party whip (much like we have party whips in the US), and that having the “whip removed” means he is no longer the party whip, that is, his fellow party members decided he should no longer be the whip because of siding with the Tories.

I suppose the same thing could happen in the US if enough of your fellow party members decided you should no longer be the party whip, though I don’t remember ever hearing of such a thing.

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Posted: 04 September 2019 07:54 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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donkeyhotay - 04 September 2019 07:42 AM

I would take it to mean that he was the party whip (much like we have party whips in the US), and that having the “whip removed” means he is no longer the party whip, that is, his fellow party members decided he should no longer be the whip because of siding with the Tories.

I suppose the same thing could happen in the US if enough of your fellow party members decided you should no longer be the party whip, though I don’t remember ever hearing of such a thing.

I don’t think that’s it. Way too logical. All of the dissidents among the Tory members are having their “whip removed.”

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Posted: 04 September 2019 08:47 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Try this explanation:

https://metro.co.uk/2019/09/04/happens-whip-withdrawn-parliament-10682828/

(edited)

[ Edited: 04 September 2019 12:47 PM by Eyehawk ]
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Posted: 04 September 2019 10:14 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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turns out that it is parliamentary jargon and will not easily yield to logic or word history. Thanks for your kind attention.

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Posted: 04 September 2019 10:17 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Some sites note that it has origin of the whip is in foxhunting. I didn’t they used whips in foxhunting.

Indeed they do - in British and Irish hunting anyway; I can’t answer for over the Pond but it would surprise me if they didn’t. Everyone riding to hounds will carry one, as for ordinary riding, but a hunting whip is distinguished from other types by having an L-shaped handle (often made of antler) which is designed to be used to open gates without dismounting. It may have a short leather tab on the end, or a long lash; the whips carried by the hunt servants (the professionals who manage the hounds) all have a lash. The hunt servants comprise the huntsman and his assistants, the whippers-in (’whips’ for short). The huntsman is the strategist; the whips’ job is is to keep the hounds under control and paying attention to what the huntsman wants them to do, with judicious cracks of their whips. Hence the parliamentary usage.

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Posted: 04 September 2019 10:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Yes, the term is originally from foxhunting. According to the OED, a whipper-in is an early eighteenth-century term for the huntsman’s assistant who was responsible for keeping the dogs from straying from the pack. By the late eighteenth century, whipper-in was being used in parliament. Later both uses of the term were shortened to whipper and then then whip.

There are whips in the US Congress, and they serve the same function as in the UK, but they have less power. As Oecolampadius notes, they can’t expel a member from the party. They had more power back in the days when representatives and senators were more dependent on party funds for re-election. What keeps them in line nowadays is the threat of a challenge in a primary election or loss of a desired committee assignment or chairship. If a representative or senator votes against the party too often, they will find themselves having to fight for the nomination. Members from more “purple” districts and states are usually given more leeway, as deposing them would usually mean the seat flips to the other party in the next election. The terms one-line, two-line, and three-line whips are not used in the US, nor is removal/withdrawal of the whip.

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Posted: 05 September 2019 11:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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The part that is still confusing to me, even after reading EyeHawk’s link and the other explanations here, is why the act of being expelled from the party is called a “removal” or “withdrawal” of the whip.  What sense of “whip” is being used here (the person who enforces party discipline, or the document outlining how the party members ought to vote, or neither of those?) and in what sense is the whip being removed/withdrawn? (I can hazard a few guesses, but I’m pretty sure that all of my guesses are totally wrong, and sharing them would probably only embarrass me and annoy those who are in the know.)

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Posted: 05 September 2019 12:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Whip also refers to the circular that is distributed to party members telling them how they are expected to vote. To have the whip removed/withdrawn is to no longer receive these instructions, effectively expulsion from the party. One can also surrender the whip, which is to quit the party voluntarily.

This is UK parliamentary parlance. It’s not used in the US. I can’t speak to other systems.

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Posted: 05 September 2019 12:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Here is Parliament’s reference page for the government Whips. I will try to find out how removal of MPs from the party came to be known as “removing” or “withdrawing” the whip, but I’m not overly confident of success. Removal of the whip basically means expelling MPs from a party as they no longer have the support of the party machine.

We live in interesting times.

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Posted: 09 September 2019 10:08 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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I’ve added whip to the Big List.

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