Friday, May 15, 2020
JACKSON COUNTY DEMOCRATS DENOUNCE REPUBLICAN SUPER MAJORITY AT CLOSE OF CORONAVIRUS SESSION!!!
Here's the session roundup according to our friends at the Courthouse offering their hot take on a tumultuous week . . . Checkit:
Jackson County Democrats: Jefferson City Update - Final Week of Republican Nonsense
With hours left in the very unusual legislative session of 2020, here are a few things that we know:
- At one time, it seemed session would have ended almost two months early due to COVID-19 concerns and passing a basic budget would conclude their business until at least summer or possibly fall when a special session would be called. Instead, Republican leadership decided to not let a golden opportunity to inflict some harm on the state go to waste. Session resumed in May to complete most of their agenda including a measure to reverse the will of the voters and repeal "Clean Missouri," an effort that passed by 62% of the vote in 2018 focused on fair map drawing for legislative districts and ethics reform. This extremely partisan decision was made earlier this week and even a few Republican lawmakers warned that this would damage them in November.
- Thursday night, Senate Republicans decided they had enough of the lower chamber telling them how to run state government and tensions flared up significantly. Since nobody had time to read the omnibus budget bill passed earlier, several members of the Senate cried foul as they identified lines that weren't agreed to prompting one Senator to say that they now can't trust anything that comes from next year's Speaker Elect and that "trust has been eroded" leading to a vote to reconsider the budget vote. This isn't the first time that the Republican super-majorities have been at each other's throats and with less than three hours to go at the time of this writing, may not be the last this year.
- Missouri remains the only state without a prescription drug monitoring program, which has been the case for several years. This fact prompted several counties to develop one of their own (Jackson County included) but does not solve the problem as abusers of the system can simply drive to a neighboring county that doesn't have their own system. Democratic leadership worked with Republican advocates all session on developing an agreeable system reaching unity early this week. Now, for the fifth year in a row, a small group of Republican Senators seem ready to stop its passage.
- It remains legal for employers to terminate employees based on their sexual orientation or identity, another law that sets Missouri apart from the rest of the nation. The Missouri Non-Discrimination Act (MONA) has been filed for 20 years and has come within inches of becoming law more than once. Again, Republicans on the fringe of a hateful society, have leveraged what power they have against a more reasonable majority to prevent this from becoming law. Our embarrassment will continue.
-A full summary of the year in the #MoLeg will come Monday. Session concludes at 6pm today by law.
Developing . . .