“Frankly, it feels like we’re negotiating with children sometimes.”
— Senate Majority Leader Steve Fenberg (3/21/19)
Republicans in the State Senate (and to a lesser extent, the State House) have decided to go all-in on their
tantrum strategy of “delay, delay, delay” because they don’t have the votes to stop legislation that makes them sad. It is perfectly within the rules for a legislator to demand that everything be read aloud, but usually nobody makes this request because it is a complete waste of time and money.
Denver7 has more on this “childish obstruction”:
“The constitution gives us the right to say ‘Slow down. Don’t make these big changes,’” Senator Own [sic] Hill from Colorado Springs said.
On Thursday, Hill requested that the Senate journal, or minutes from the previous day’s session, be read back in full before work could start. That took a half hour to complete. Hill then asked for multiple bills to be read out loud in full before they were voted on…
…The Democratic Majority Leader of the Senate disagreed with the tactic, calling it “obstructionist.”
“They’re basically slowing things down to a crawl and creating an embarrassment for the institution of the democratic process,” Senator Steve Fenberg said…
…It took the Senate two-and-a-half hours to vote on two total bills on Thursday morning. [Pols emphasis]
Per the demands of Sen. Owen Hill and friends, Senate staffers have been required to read the entire journal from the previous day, including the votes taken by every Senator on every bill (Senate Journal for March 21, 2019 starts here on page 509).
Reading the entire journal aloud on Thursday took about 48 minutes. This is what it sounded like:
Marshall Zelinger of 9News has more on the poor bastard whose job it is to read aloud to a bunch of grown men and women. We’re looking forward to Senate Republicans trying to explain this nonsense to voters in 2020.