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Sure Enough Insurance is a large insurance company that has recently been dealing with financial difficulties. Whenever a policy-holder makes a claim, a claims coordinator determines the amount of money Sure Enough Insurance is obligated to pay. The aforementioned financial difficulties are forcing Sure Enough Insurance to fire 25% of its claim coordinators. To ensure Sure Enough Insurance's ability to handle claims within a reasonable time period, consultants recommend that Sure Enough Insurance lay off those coordinators who now take the longest time, on average, to complete work on their assigned claims.
In the argument given, the two portions in boldface play which of the following roles?
This answer choice is appealing because it uses the word claim, which also appears in the first portion in boldface type. However, the first portion in boldface type is not a claim at all, it's a premise. Therefore, its accuracy is not an issue. We consider premises to be completely accurate facts.
The first portion in boldface type is indeed evidence, but it doesn't challenge the argument's conclusion since it doesn't weaken or in any way oppose it. You can immediately eliminate answer choices that incorrectly define the first boldface part; do not waste time reading the rest.
The first part of this answer choice is wordy and complicated. Instead of trying to figure it out, it is easier and quicker to go on and read the second part of the answer choice. Eliminating this answer choice on the basis of its second part is a lot simpler and easier: the second portion in boldface type is not an explanation. It is the argument's conclusion in the form of a recommendation.
The argument tells a story about Sure Enough Insurance and its problem, a part of which is the first boldface portion. The second boldface portion concludes the argument by presenting the consultants' solution to the problem.
The first boldface portion is not the argument's conclusion. It is a simple fact about Sure Enough Insurance and is, therefore, one of the argument's premises. You can immediately eliminate answer choices that incorrectly define the first boldface part; do not waste time reading the rest.