Fowler reads

You can insist that something be done (subjunctive with that optionally omitted) or that something should be done.

Isn't that also optional in the version with should then?

  • You might want to un-italicize the second "that" to match the source (I can't make such a small edit myself). Sep 24, 2021 at 20:03

1 Answer 1


Are these the options? It's clearer if you write out the choice instead of bundling them together.

You can insist (that) something be done...

You can insist (that) something should be done...


You may say (that) something should be done...

In any case, "that" is optional.

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