Once the legislative session gets down to its final month and a half, it’s a given that the State Senate will be a busy place during the evenings. Such was not the case Wednesday as Senator Kevin Engler (R-Farmington), the Majority Floor Leader, sent Senators home around 4 o’clock in the afternoon.
Several bills have run into dead ends in the Senate and, after some recent sessions that went into the early morning hours, Engler was inclined to give everybody a break to relax and think about something other than head butting over bills that still need to be worked on outside the chamber.
"Those bills," said Engler. "Nothing’s going to be resolved, so there’s no reason to spend eight hours on them here, tonight, after the kind of hours we’ve been putting in the last couple of weeks without resolution."
Things have gotten a little testy, at times, but Engler believes they have not been as bad as they’ve been in some previous sessions.
"The first year I was here we had to separate people in the back room over a bill on tort reform," said Engler. "That was tense."
He feels good about the fact there have been no physical confrontations over this year’s controversial issues.
"Are some people tired of long sessions? Yeah. But no one’s had any physical confrontations that I’m aware of and I’ve seen several over the years of people puffing up and that hasn’t happened this year."
Engler hopes that after a relatively easy day on Thursday the Senators will go home and will be a little more relaxed when they return to Jefferson City next week.