committee of the whole


noun

the entire membership of a legislative body, sitting in a deliberative rather than a legislative capacity, for informal debate and preliminary consideration of matters awaiting legislative action.

Origin of committee of the whole

First recorded in 1745–55
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for committee of the whole

  • Their decisions were made in committee-of-the-whole, and nothing was done that could not meet with the willing consent of all.