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# The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the

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The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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08 Oct 2011, 23:42
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The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to the floor.

(A) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to
(B) that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to
(C) under which members of the house are allowed to go home at the end of each vote instead of confining them in
(D) that would allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than confinement in
(E) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to

[Reveal] Spoiler: Doubts
I know everyone is going to say "E" sounds more concise and it's idiomatic, but according to MGMAT SC guide P. 163 "Instead of" IS a correct idiom, GMAT just doesn't like it for some reason. I DO NOT think E uses correct parallelism: "to allow x to go home" (the infinitive) with "be confined to" (the linking verb). It's comparing a 'what subject does' to a 'what subject is'. And how can you just omit the "to" and say it's an implied infinitive...you MUST have the "to" for infinitives!
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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09 Oct 2011, 03:20
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stringworm wrote:
The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to the floor.
(A) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to
(B) that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to
(C) under which members of the house are allowed to go home at the end of each vote instead of confining them in
(D) that would allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than confinement in
(E) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to

[Reveal] Spoiler: Doubts
I know everyone is going to say "E" sounds more concise and it's idiomatic, but according to MGMAT SC guide P. 163 "Instead of" IS a correct idiom, GMAT just doesn't like it for some reason. I DO NOT think E uses correct parallelism: "to allow x to go home" (the infinitive) with "be confined to" (the linking verb). It's comparing a 'what subject does' to a 'what subject is'. And how can you just omit the "to" and say it's an implied infinitive...you MUST have the "to" for infinitives!

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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26 Oct 2011, 03:13
+1 for E.

GMAT prefers "rather than" to "instead of".

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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26 Oct 2011, 05:39
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stringworm wrote:
The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to the floor.
(A) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to
(B) that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to
(C) under which members of the house are allowed to go home at the end of each vote instead of confining them in
(D) that would allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than confinement in
(E) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to

[Reveal] Spoiler: Doubts
I know everyone is going to say "E" sounds more concise and it's idiomatic, but according to MGMAT SC guide P. 163 "Instead of" IS a correct idiom, GMAT just doesn't like it for some reason. I DO NOT think E uses correct parallelism: "to allow x to go home" (the infinitive) with "be confined to" (the linking verb). It's comparing a 'what subject does' to a 'what subject is'. And how can you just omit the "to" and say it's an implied infinitive...you MUST have the "to" for infinitives!

FIRST OF ALL:

"Instead of" is indeed a correct idiom. The problem is that it is not applicable in this situation. Here's why: "instead of" literally means "in the stead of," i.e., "in place of."

Here's the test: does it make sense to say "to go home in place of be confined to the floor"? Not at all, especially since "home" and "floor" are two different places!

SECOND:

You are correct that you need to compare like things to like things, but in this case (which is actually not a comparison but a contrast) the contrast is between "do" and "be," which is perfectly valid since both are verbs in the infinitive form.

THIRD:

... how can you just omit the "to" and say it's an implied infinitive...you MUST have the "to" for infinitives!

Technically, that "to" is NOT omitted. When you have a contrast, it is as though you split the sentence into two parts. The sentence splits off AFTER the "to":

... members of the house to go home
... (members of the house to) be confined to the floor
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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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26 Oct 2011, 18:14
Wow, talk about a total eureka moment when you showed the split after the first "to"! Thank you so much. No one has been able to answer this, including the supposed PHD and author tutor I wasted \$110 on. Much appreciated.

brk brk

Does anyone know where I could find a synopsis of what is allowed or what is preferred in terms of participle and/or tense in sentence construction? For example- Past Perfect + Past Particle + Past Progressive = Ok (We had been skiing all day) or Sandy played with the dog by running it around the lake..... Simple Past + Past progressive = Ok ...etc.

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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26 Oct 2011, 18:38
One more question- Can an infinitive ever be paralleled to a command subjunctive? Something like- He is to be tortured because the king demanded that he suffer.

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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27 Oct 2011, 20:56
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I'm not being sarcastic, I really want to know if there is a reason for this: why do people only post their answer? Especially when the OA is stated? I personally see no value in it.

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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27 Oct 2011, 21:08
stringworm wrote:
I'm not being sarcastic, I really want to know if there is a reason for this: why do people only post their answer? Especially when the OA is stated? I personally see no value in it.

Sometimes there is no need to repeat the reasons for choosing an answer...just read over rustypolymath explanation

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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03 Nov 2011, 15:15
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stringworm wrote:
Wow, talk about a total eureka moment when you showed the split after the first "to"! Thank you so much. No one has been able to answer this, including the supposed PHD and author tutor I wasted \$110 on. Much appreciated.

Pleasure to have helped.

Quote:
Does anyone know where I could find a synopsis of what is allowed or what is preferred in terms of participle and/or tense in sentence construction? For example- Past Perfect + Past Particle + Past Progressive = Ok (We had been skiing all day) or Sandy played with the dog by running it around the lake..... Simple Past + Past progressive = Ok ...etc.

Phoo... well, my favorite resources for grammar are Harry Shaw's Errors in English and Ways to Correct Them and the Fowler brothers' The King's English. As far as a list of acceptable tense syntaxes, I'm not sure. The general rule is that you should match past with past and present/future with present/future, but there can be exceptions depending on the consequentiality, parallelism and persepctive of the clause.

Make no mistake about it: English is a Germanic language and there ARE objective syntactical rules, and contrary to what is often supposed, it is rarely or never possible to dispense with them. The thing is, there is a great deal of precision and a seeming "exception" or "correct rule-breaker" is usually the result of over-generalization of something that happens to apply only in certain situations.

The best advice I can give you is this: get as comfortable as you can with formal grammar. Train your ear to "hear" good sentences so that, rather than trying to memorize a checklist of acceptable syntaxes or idioms, you can start to "feel out" the consequences of NOT using the appropriate syntax. For example, in the original question on this thread, the consequence of using "instead of" was to entrain literary confusion by juxtaposing the metaphorical "in the place of" with the literal "place." (By the way, the Fowler brothers have an excellent discussion on metaphors and the consequences of inappropriately mixing metaphor with literal meaning. The book, however, is very, very dense.)

The books I mentioned above are good. You should also cultivate the habit of reading good, dense, precisely written materials. Avoid newspapers and popular journals. Even "high gloss" publications such as "The Economist" are too commercial to get you to the level you're looking for. Look into academic periodicals and classic American novels. (My personal favorite, for style AND content, is The Scarlet Letter.)

Quote:
One more question- Can an infinitive ever be paralleled to a command subjunctive? Something like- He is to be tortured because the king demanded that he suffer.

Well, that sentence is not actually a question of parallel: the second clause is a subordinate clause and falls under a kind of sub-level of the first if you diagram it.
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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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03 Nov 2011, 18:02
damn I was thinking B... but I suppose 'deny' does not call for "that" to come after it huh?
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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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03 Nov 2011, 19:04
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jeprince112 wrote:
damn I was thinking B... but I suppose 'deny' does not call for "that" to come after it huh?

No, the problem with B was the "instead of" and the use of the past participle/adjective "confined" as a parallel to "to go."
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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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04 Nov 2011, 21:17
+1 E

It uses subjunctive mood i.e "denied that" which follows "be" form of the verb, so E is the correct answer
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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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13 May 2012, 20:12
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[quote="stringworm"]The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to the floor.
(A) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to
(B) that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to
(C) under which members of the house are allowed to go home at the end of each vote instead of confining them in
(D) that would allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than confinement in
(E) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to

Use "Rather than" to compare verbs and "instead of" to compare nouns.

Using this concept i selected E as my answer.

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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28 Jan 2013, 11:41
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stringworm wrote:
The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to the floor.
(A) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to
(B) that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to
(C) under which members of the house are allowed to go home at the end of each vote instead of confining them in
(D) that would allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than confinement in
(E) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to

I am responding to a pm from fameatop. First of all, let me say --- I heartily applaud everything rustypolymath says ---- truly brilliant contributions to this debate --- the only thing that's unclear to me is: what in tarnation "rusty" about him? He seems spot-on sharp.

fameatop wrote:
I would like to know why option B is incorrect & E is correct. I am not convinced with the explanation provided earlier.

Let's look at version (B) of the sentence.

(B) The majority leader denied a motion that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to the floor.

Problem with (B)
"instead of" is a preposition --- as such, its object must be a noun or something that behaves as a noun --- say, a substantive clause or a gerund. The object of a preposition cannot be a verb or an infinitive phrase or a participle."Confined" is a participle, not an appropriate object for a preposition.

I really like rustypolymath's point about replacing "instead of" with "in the place of" --- that also shows why this "instead of" construction is incorrect.

We could use "instead of" if we had parallel gerunds ---- for example, the construction "... instead of confining them to the floor" would be correct --- a gerund object for the preposition -- but then we run into parallelism problems. In this particular sentence, the first action "members of the house to go home at the end of each vote" would be too cumbersome if we tried to make it a gerund. Also, the verb "allow" idiomatically takes the infinitive, so we have to stick with infinitives. Those facts make an "instead of" construction impossible in this particular sentence. Below, though, are a few examples of "instead of" with parallel gerunds.
(1) The highway officer recommended taking the mountainous side route instead of waiting on the backed-up freeway.
(3) The teacher suggested studying the chapter summaries thoroughly instead of trying to re-read all these chapters in their entirety.

I would not go so far as to say the GMAT likes the "rather than" construction and doesn't like the "instead of" construction --- that's too black & white and simplistic. I would say, though, you will see much more of the former than of the latter. You see, both "rather than" and "instead of" have similar meanings ---- the replacement of one thing with another ---- but the former is far more versatile than the latter. The construction "instead of" is a preposition, only a preposition, and can only have a noun (or noun-like thing) as its object. By contrast, the construction "rather than" can act as a preposition or a conjunction --- it can link two nouns or two verbs or participial phrases or infinitive phrases, i.e. two complete actions. Now look at version (E) of the above sentence.
(E) The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to the floor.

What we have here are two infinitive phrases in parallel --- a mere preposition can't do that! The second clause has several common words omitted, as rustypolymath. Here's (E) again with all the omitted words added in brackets.
(E') The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than [members of the house to] be confined to the floor.

Obviously, that version is way too wordy, but it brings out the infinitive phrases in parallel. By contrast, notice how sleek and elegant version (E) is --- perfect grammar and efficient concision --- that's why it's the best answer.

Does all this make sense?

Mike
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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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25 Jun 2013, 11:20
Well, after going thru the discussion above I still have doubts. I might sound naive but it's just so confusing....

I am having confusion between B or D AND E
B or D ---- leader denied the motion That ALLOWED members to go home. Which means leader doesn't want the members to go home.
E ----- leader denied the motion TO allow members to go home. Here motion is against members going home and leader denied motion and hence now members r allowed to go home.

Am I missing something? Both r totally opposite perspectives.

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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25 Jun 2013, 12:44
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Shashank1149 wrote:
Well, after going thru the discussion above I still have doubts. I might sound naive but it's just so confusing....

I am having confusion between B or D AND E
B or D ---- leader denied the motion That ALLOWED members to go home. Which means leader doesn't want the members to go home.
E ----- leader denied the motion TO allow members to go home. Here motion is against members going home and leader denied motion and hence now members r allowed to go home.

Am I missing something? Both r totally opposite perspectives.

Hi Shashank1149

There are two structures having same meaning in this sentence:
(1) X denied Y that have allowed Z to go home.....
(2) X denied Y to allow Z to go home.........

The difference between the two above is:
(1) uses relative clause: X denied Y that......;
(2) uses idiom "X denied Y to do something"

In (1): "that have allowed...." is a relative clause that modifies directly "a motion" ==> The intended meaning is: The majority leader wanted to stop "a motion that ........."
In (2): The idiom is: The majority leader denied a motion to do....... ==> The majority leader wanted to stop "a motion to allow employees......"

Therefore, (1) and (2) have same meaning.

B, D, E which one is correct?

(B) that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to
Wrong. Member should be confined (passive voice), not "confined" (simple past tense)

(D) that would allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than confinement in
Wrong. Structure ".....to go home....rather than confinement in..." is not parallel. (infinitive rather than noun)

(E) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to
Correct. "....to go home....rather than be confined..." is correct. Member should be confined (passive voice).

Hope it helps.
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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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08 Aug 2013, 12:04
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Brilliant discussion. Although i got the answer correct i feel like a minion when i see such dense reasoning. How does one thinks so much with the given time constraints???? I know it comes with practice but still. This looks like years of work for me.

Cheers to you guys!!!

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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08 Aug 2013, 13:04
mikemcgarry wrote:
stringworm wrote:
The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to the floor.
(A) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of to confine them to
(B) that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to
(C) under which members of the house are allowed to go home at the end of each vote instead of confining them in
(D) that would allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than confinement in
(E) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to

I am responding to a pm from fameatop. First of all, let me say --- I heartily applaud everything rustypolymath says ---- truly brilliant contributions to this debate --- the only thing that's unclear to me is: what in tarnation "rusty" about him? He seems spot-on sharp.

fameatop wrote:
I would like to know why option B is incorrect & E is correct. I am not convinced with the explanation provided earlier.

Let's look at version (B) of the sentence.

(B) The majority leader denied a motion that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to the floor.

Problem with (B)
"instead of" is a preposition --- as such, its object must be a noun or something that behaves as a noun --- say, a substantive clause or a gerund. The object of a preposition cannot be a verb or an infinitive phrase or a participle."Confined" is a participle, not an appropriate object for a preposition.

I really like rustypolymath's point about replacing "instead of" with "in the place of" --- that also shows why this "instead of" construction is incorrect.

We could use "instead of" if we had parallel gerunds ---- for example, the construction "... instead of confining them to the floor" would be correct --- a gerund object for the preposition -- but then we run into parallelism problems. In this particular sentence, the first action "members of the house to go home at the end of each vote" would be too cumbersome if we tried to make it a gerund. Also, the verb "allow" idiomatically takes the infinitive, so we have to stick with infinitives. Those facts make an "instead of" construction impossible in this particular sentence. Below, though, are a few examples of "instead of" with parallel gerunds.
(1) The highway officer recommended taking the mountainous side route instead of waiting on the backed-up freeway.
(3) The teacher suggested studying the chapter summaries thoroughly instead of trying to re-read all these chapters in their entirety.

I would not go so far as to say the GMAT likes the "rather than" construction and doesn't like the "instead of" construction --- that's too black & white and simplistic. I would say, though, you will see much more of the former than of the latter. You see, both "rather than" and "instead of" have similar meanings ---- the replacement of one thing with another ---- but the former is far more versatile than the latter. The construction "instead of" is a preposition, only a preposition, and can only have a noun (or noun-like thing) as its object. By contrast, the construction "rather than" can act as a preposition or a conjunction --- it can link two nouns or two verbs or participial phrases or infinitive phrases, i.e. two complete actions. Now look at version (E) of the above sentence.
(E) The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to the floor.

What we have here are two infinitive phrases in parallel --- a mere preposition can't do that! The second clause has several common words omitted, as rustypolymath. Here's (E) again with all the omitted words added in brackets.
(E') The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than [members of the house to] be confined to the floor.

Obviously, that version is way too wordy, but it brings out the infinitive phrases in parallel. By contrast, notice how sleek and elegant version (E) is --- perfect grammar and efficient concision --- that's why it's the best answer.

Does all this make sense?

Mike

great answer. Although I did pick E, I now know why the other answers are wrong. Thank you!

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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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08 Aug 2013, 14:08
rustypolymath wrote:

The best advice I can give you is this: get as comfortable as you can with formal grammar. Train your ear to "hear" good sentences so that, rather than trying to memorize a checklist of acceptable syntaxes or idioms, you can start to "feel out" the consequences of NOT using the appropriate syntax. For example, in the original question on this thread, the consequence of using "instead of" was to entrain literary confusion by juxtaposing the metaphorical "in the place of" with the literal "place." (By the way, the Fowler brothers have an excellent discussion on metaphors and the consequences of inappropriately mixing metaphor with literal meaning. The book, however, is very, very dense.)

I'm hoping to go a long way playing by the ear... Just cant get around to the technical side of things.. Well my first cat should separate the wheat from the chaff
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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the [#permalink]

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27 Sep 2013, 03:01
pqhai wrote:
Shashank1149 wrote:
Well, after going thru the discussion above I still have doubts. I might sound naive but it's just so confusing....

I am having confusion between B or D AND E
B or D ---- leader denied the motion That ALLOWED members to go home. Which means leader doesn't want the members to go home.
E ----- leader denied the motion TO allow members to go home. Here motion is against members going home and leader denied motion and hence now members r allowed to go home.

Am I missing something? Both r totally opposite perspectives.

Hi Shashank1149

There are two structures having same meaning in this sentence:
(1) X denied Y that have allowed Z to go home.....
(2) X denied Y to allow Z to go home.........

The difference between the two above is:
(1) uses relative clause: X denied Y that......;
(2) uses idiom "X denied Y to do something"

In (1): "that have allowed...." is a relative clause that modifies directly "a motion" ==> The intended meaning is: The majority leader wanted to stop "a motion that ........."
In (2): The idiom is: The majority leader denied a motion to do....... ==> The majority leader wanted to stop "a motion to allow employees......"

Therefore, (1) and (2) have same meaning.

B, D, E which one is correct?

(B) that would have allowed members of the house to go home at the end of each vote instead of confined to
Wrong. Member should be confined (passive voice), not "confined" (simple past tense)

(D) that would allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than confinement in
Wrong. Structure ".....to go home....rather than confinement in..." is not parallel. (infinitive rather than noun)

(E) to allow members of the house to go home at the end of each vote rather than be confined to
Correct. "....to go home....rather than be confined..." is correct. Member should be confined (passive voice).

Hope it helps.

Hey pqhai,

I have the same doubt that you answered in above post ..

I will try to make that question more clear ..

1. leader denied the motion to allow members to go home .. means there was a meeting going on about a motion but everybody was bored and wanted to go home but they could've gone home only of motion is accepted or denied, so leader denied the motion so that everyone could go home and kill the boredom

2. leader denied the motion that allowed members to go home .. means there was a meeting going on about a motion, and according to this motion people get bored after casting their votes and would like if they are allowed to go after they have voted, and leader denied this motion(request) of members ..

clearly according to my reasoning anything with a "to" should not be the answer ..

I know all the "instead of" story and i know you're right about that but just want to know if two sentence were same and only difference were of "to" and "that", what would've been the right answer ?
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Re: The majority leader denied a motion to allow members of the   [#permalink] 27 Sep 2013, 03:01

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