Legislators in override: Four key vetoes overturned with more votes to come

Legislators in override: Four key vetoes overturned with more votes to come-attachment0

In action on Monday and Tuesday, July 25 and 26, North Carolina legislators overrode four closely watched gubernatorial vetoes, including bills that create medical liability reforms, set up sweeping state regulatory reform, establish new rules for Medicaid and health care providers, and make significant changes to the Employment Security Commision. Late Tuesday, in a party line vote of 67-52, the House failed to override the veto of HB 351 (Restore Confidence in Government), which would require photo ID for voting, but the bill remains alive through passage of reconsideration vote. Of the remaining bills considered for potential override, HB 854 (Abortion — Woman’s Right to Know Act) passed in the House and moves to the Senate.

Still waiting in the override wings are SB 709 (Energy Jobs Act), which would create a path for onshore and offshore drilling, including fracking, and SB 727 (No Dues Checkoff for School Employees), which eliminates payroll checkoff payments for certain employee associations. Both the House and Senate are set to reconvene on Wednesday afternoon.

For a governor-vetoed bill to become law, it must get the support of three-fifths of the members present and voting in the bill’s original house, followed by three-fifths of the members present and voting in the second house. According to a review of the override votes for the above bills, as listed on the N.C. General Assembly’s website, Western North Carolina legislators took the following positions — not universally along party lines: Democratic Sen. Martin Nesbitt of Buncombe County joined the override majority on both the Medicaid and Health Choice Provider legislation and the Regulatory Reform Act, while Republican Rep. Chuck McGrady of Hendersonville voted against overriding the regulatory reform veto.

HB 854 (Abortion-Woman’s Right to Know Act): House only, veto override 72-47, July 26. Moves to Senate.
AYE: Republicans Phillip Frye of Spruce Pine, David Guice of Brevard, Chuck McGrady of Hendersonville, Tim Moffitt of Asheville, Roger West of Marble.
NO: Democrats Susan Fisher of Asheville, Patsy Keever of Asheville, Ray Rapp of Mars Hill, Phil Haire of Sylva.

SB 33 (Medical Liability Reforms): House veto override 74-42, July 25 (Senate override, 35-12, July 13); becomes state law.
AYE: Republican Reps. Frye, Guice, Moffitt, McGrady, West; Republican Sens. Ralph Hise of Spruce Pine, Tom Apodaca of Hendersonville, Jim Davis of Franklin.
NO: Democratic Reps. Fisher, Keever, Rapp, Haire; Democratic Sen. Nesbitt.

SB 496 (Medicaid and Health Choice Provider Req.): House veto override 74-41, July 25 (Senate override, 47-1, July 13); becomes state law.
AYE: Republican Reps. Frye, Guice, Moffitt, McGrady, West; Republican Sens. Hise, Apodaca, Davis; Democratic Sen. Nesbitt.
NO: Democratic Reps. Fisher, Keever, Rapp, Haire.

SB 532 (Employment Security Commission/Jobs Reform): House veto override, 72-47, July 27 (Senate override, 31-17, July 13); becomes state law.
AYE: Republican Reps. Frye, Guice, Moffitt, McGrady, West; Republican Sens. Hise, Apodaca, Davis.
NO: Democratic Reps. Fisher, Keever, Rapp, Haire; Democratic Sen. Nesbitt.

SB 781: (Regulatory Reform Act): House veto override, 76-42, July 25 (Senate override, 48-0, July 13); becomes state law.
AYE: Republican Reps. Frye, Guice, Moffitt, West; Republican Sens. Hise, Apodaca, Davis; Democratic Sen. Nesbitt.
NO: Democratic Reps. Fisher, Keever, McGrady, Rapp, Haire.

by Nelda Holder, contributing editor

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3 thoughts on “Legislators in override: Four key vetoes overturned with more votes to come

  1. Um, hang on a minute.

    Let me see if I have this right. There’s a bill, and it goes through the House and Senate. So it goes to the Governor. Who vetoes it.

    So it goes back to the Legislature for an override. And it doesn’t make the override. So it’s dead.

    Only, it’s now a zombie bill that can be reconsidered?

    Is it just “keep throwing the thing until you get it to stick up there” or something?

  2. Nelda Holder

    You got it right … mostly. (Zombie bill — nice term.)

    The deal is, in both the House and Senate, someone voting for the prevailing side is allowed to propose “reconsideration,” and reconsideration can happen at any time. I am told the “norm” is a genuine vote on the prevailing side, but sometimes a legislator crosses his or her own former side in order to hold the reconsideration option open.

  3. Hmm. I don’t think I’ve ever heard of a process like that. Well, I’m sure that lots of legislation gets bounced around here and there but to actually have a process…

    Thanks for the info.

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