The text of this radio broadcast is below:
When you’re dealing with the legislature, the key thing to remember is that it’s all fluid. Meetings can suddenly be scheduled or canceled, bills that were on track suddenly fall off the rails and sometimes you get a second chance. A bill that was thought to be dead suddenly rises like a phoenix from the ashes. That can be good but it can also be bad.
In this this process a bill’s chances of passing decline as time goes on, but nothing is ever truly dead until the final gavel falls on the last day of the session. Our goal first and foremost going into any legislative session is to kill the bad bills. The problem is that killed is a relative term. When a bill is tabled in a committee it’s really not dead, it’s just stalled. To get it moving forward again all that’s required is a simple majority vote. It’s also possible to take a tabled bill from a committee by force–that’s called a blast motion. If a bill is stuck in a committee and a majority of legislators want to vote on it they can simply vote for it to be taken from the committee and moved to the floor of the House or Senate. It’s easier to do that in the Senate because it only requires a simple majority vote. In the House it requires a super majority of 3/5 of the body.
As of today, we’re three days away from the transmittal deadline. That’s when all general bills that begin in one house must be transmitted to the other or they’ll die. It’s also a time when legislators will make blast motion after blast motion in an attempt to rescue stalled bills. Most will fail, but a few might slip through and it’s our job to make sure that none of those that managed to survive are bills that we’ve targeted as bad. For our team it’s like sitting on pins and needles, and it’s that point in the session when we start chewing antacids like they’re candy.
When Wednesday arrives we will breathe a sigh of relief. When the smoke clears all the bad bills that missed transmittal will be dead, or will they? Like I said, in this process nothing is truly dead until the final gavel falls on the last day of the session. Just because a bill technically died doesn’t mean that the language cannot be amended lock, stock and barrel into a bill that’s still alive. Although the chances of that happening definitely decreases as the session wears on, the key thing to remember is that this process runs on votes and anything is possible if enough people are willing to vote yes.
It’s basically a game of high-stakes poker played by chess masters with some elements of monopoly thrown in for good measure. At this stage of the game a bill to legalize assisted suicide is on the table in Senate Judiciary and bills to regulate church-based youth treatment programs and promote the homosexual agenda are tabled on the House side. All the federal title ten money that flows to Planned Parenthood has been stripped from the budget and we’re doing everything in our power to see that none of this is resurrected. With all the uncertainty of the next three days, one thing one is for certain–whether you’re a member the House or the Senate, a Republican or Democrat, a lobbyist or a staff member, everyone is looking forward to the transmittal break. It only lasts for four days but it’s a chance to decompress, reconnect with family and finally get some sleep.