The gridlock is over. The Missouri Senate gave initial approval today to a bill that would make it tougher for voters to change the state Constitution.

Missouri Senate Democrats held up floor voting on a proposal for over 20 hours Monday night into Tuesday. It would require a simple majority plus a majority of votes cast from most of Missouri’s U.S. House seats.

“I really hope you pump the brakes,” said Senate Minority Leader John Rizzo, D-Kansas City. “I really hope that at that point you realize your majorities have gotten too big. You are drunk on power. You should cede this change. You shouldn’t do it.”

Sen. Karla May, D-St. Louis, said Republicans are ignoring the issues that Missourians face.

“I want you to know that your Republican elected representatives and senators here in Missouri want to talk about taking away your voice, your right, your vote, your right to do initiative petition,” she said. “They said that you do not know what you’re talking about. You don’t know what you’re doing at the ballot box.”

The issue is a top priority for many Republicans in the legislature.

Notably, so-called “ballot candy” was removed from the bill, such as a lobbyist gift ban and prohibiting non-citizens from voting. Sen. Mike Cierpiot, R-Lee’s Summit, successfully stripped a piece in the proposal regarding who can legally vote in Missouri, but it angered fellow Republican, Sen. Bill Eigel, R-Weldon Spring.

The bill requires one more Senate vote before moving to the House for consideration. It could be voted on this week.

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