A brief, merely technical session has been held in the Missouri House as lawmakers ignore Governor Holden’s amended call to the special session and prepare to return to him education bills in the exact same form of those he rejected. The top Democrat in the House, Representative Mark Abel of Festus, questioned Majority Floor Leader Jason Crowell of Cape Girardeau about the action being taken by majority Republicans. Crowell stated Republicans feel comfortable that they are following constitutional guidelines in sticking with the original call of this special legislative session that has now entered its fourth week. Crowell adds that the Republican leadership intends to suspend rules and even cut off debate to move the bills through the process and on to the Senate in time to have them back before the governor prior to the July first start of the fiscal year. The House Budget Committee likely will not even meet on the bills funding public schools and colleges, but Republicans will use what is called a discharge petition to take them out of committee and get them to the floor for debate. Both first-round and second-round voting could take place tomorrow, giving the bills to the Senate by Thursday. The new state fiscal year begins Tuesday. Governor Holden has given no indication that he would sign the bills upon their return.
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