House Speaker says he didn't have needed 2/3rds to override Lynch veto and says it would be "perilous" to announce when vote may take place.
After all of the threats adn bribes Speaker O'Brien still didn't have enough votes to override Governor Lynch's veto. Another man might have gotten the message. Not O'Brien.
The turnout for the vote was high, 380 out of 397 representatives were present. Some were pretty annoyed that the vote was going to be delayed. Representative Tony Soltani (a Republican from Epsom) tried to force the issue. The Speaker became so irate that he had the House Sergeant-at-Arms escort Representative Soltani back to his seat.
Speaker O’Brien, for his part, said numbers dictated his decision making. He says he would have preferred maintain his schedule but wasn’t sure he had the votes.
“It would have been close. It depends who shows up. Without having, for example, I was missing five votes, five yes votes, and I wasn’t going to take that chance.”
It seems the Speaker needs more time to game this vote. It's entirely possible that he will schedule this vote on a day when many members are absent. It takes a 2/3 majority to pass, but that is 2/3 of those present. He has until December to schedule this vote.
Last month, the Vermont legislature passed a bill that would create a single payer health care system for the entire state. Today, Governor Peter Shumlin signed that bill into law. Vermont is the first state in the nation to pass this kind of legislation. The state will spend the next 4 years setting up the system. What I found most remarkable about this brief story is the quote from Governor Shumlin. From ThinkProgress:
n a statement provided to ThinkProgress, Shumlin explained that he had an economic and moral imperative to champion Vermont's new health care law: "This law recognizes an economic and fiscal imperative – that we must control the growth in health care costs that are putting families at economic risk and making it harder for small employers to do business. We have a moral imperative to fix this problem, with 47,000 Vermonters uninsured and another 150,000 underinsured and worried about how to afford keeping their families healthy"
Vermonters feel they have a moral imperative to take care of families and business. The NH legislature feels they have a moral imperative to destroy unions and ensure lower wages for NH workers. Truly, all we share is a border.
cross posted at MainSt/workingamerica.org