Groups representing disabled Missourians are calling on the Legislature to bypass Governor Matt Blunt and have lawmakers, themselves, call a special session of the General Assembly to pass legislation restoring the Medical Assistance for Working Disabled – or MAWD – program. And, some members of the Legislature appear ready to try to make that request a reality. House Democratic Leader Jeff Harris of Columbia says the effort is in the works, but it’s going to take a lot of convincing. He believes in the concept, saying if Governor Blunt refuses to call a special session, lawmakers should take the matter into their own hands. Republican Representative Jim Lembke of St. Louis believes there is plenty of support among House Republicans to force a special session of the Legislature. But Lembke can’t speak for the Republicans in the Senate, where resistance to the idea could be stronger. In order for the Legislature to call itself into special session, it would need the signatures of 75 percent of both the House and Senate membership. That works out to 123 Representatives and 26 Senators. The signatures would then be presented to Secretary of State Robin Carnahan. This has been a part of the Missouri Constitution since 1988, but has never been exercised.

Related web sites:
Missouri Constitution, Article III, Section 20 (b)