The Missouri House of Representatives will remain Speaker-less until the veto session in September. That leaves Speaker Pro-Tem Shane Schoeller (R-Willard) serving as acting speaker until the veto session in September, now that Steven Tilley has resigned.
That comes as Republicans prepare for a session in which they hope to overturn at least one of the Governor’s vetoes. Schoeller says he’s talking to staff and caucus members about that.
“I’m not ready to make any official comment on that. I know that personally I want to make sure that when it comes to the vote regarding healthcare, that we work forward on that.”
Schoeller refers to Senate Bill 749 dealing with health insurance coverage for abortion, sterilization or birth control. Other Republican leaders have said they want to overturn the veto of HB 1329, that would allow local governments to charge sales tax in vehicle purchases.
Schoeller says he doesn’t know how many veto overrides will be attempted. “I need to take a better look at it, because yesterday was a surprise to me as it was to most folks as far as Speaker Tilley announcing his resignation, so I want to make sure to take a better look before I make any official word on that.”
Schoeller says his surprise was in that he didn’t know when Tilley was going to resign. He’d known it was coming. “We had had the discussion.”
He says he’s not concerned that Tilley’s resignation means Republicans will be attempting veto overrides with one fewer vote. “We’ve been in this position before and I think that if we have the votes, we’ll rise to the occasion and vote for it but if we don’t, then certainly we won’t go forward.”
He’s also not concerned about taking on the additional duties of the Speaker ahead of the veto session, while running for Secretary of State.
“I think that when you look at our caucus we’re a unified body for the most part and so if there’s anybody that disagrees there’s probably going to be just the handful of disagreement so we’ll work together with them on those issues if that is the case.”
Schoeller says the caucus will elect a new speaker during the veto session, and then again in January after new lawmakers have been sworn in.