Democrats and some Republicans unhappy with the way the Senate has been run this week slowed things down in it Thursday, but won’t say how much that slowdown will continue.
After Republicans forced a vote on a proposed ballot issue that backers say will protect those with religious objections to same-sex marriage, several Democrats and some Republicans held up the Senate Thursday by proposing changes in the journal to reflect what they say really happened when that vote was forced, and then by making sure the chamber’s rules were strictly followed.
Senate Democrat leader Joe Keaveny (St. Louis) can’t say whether those tactics will continue next week.
“We do have a lot of issues that we need to tackle. We need to tackle some of the scars that we opened up during this week. It’s going to be a challenging time,” said Keaveny. “Tensions are still very, very high.’
Keaveny said Democrats will meet on Monday and decide how to proceed, but said what his caucus does will also depend a great deal on what issues come before the Senate.
“There’s some bills on the calendar that warrant a lot of discussion,” said Keaveny.
That includes legislation that would require Missouri voters to show a photo identification to vote. Democrats strongly oppose those measures.
Several other key issues that remain as the legislature nears the halfway mark of its regular session are transportation funding, a prescription drug monitoring program, and the state budget for Fiscal Year 2017.