In the case of motor loads connected to a long branch circuit, why does NEC Table 430.52 limit selection of an over current protection device (OCPD) to a smaller size than the branch conductor will permit?
My hypothesis is a branch conductor that is made larger to compensate for voltage drop cannot supply a larger motor load where voltage drop was the constraining factor. Therefore, the OCPD is limited in size to add protection against motor damage from an unacceptable voltage drop.
This flies in the face of common reasoning that says branch OCPD are for protecting the branch conductors and are not for motor protection. Separate motor overload protection is installed for that purpose.
What gives? Is the NEC actually providing motor protection against unacceptable branch voltage drop during motor startup by prescribing these size limits on circuit breakers?
I would appreciate others' thoughts on this.