Monday, March 19, 2012

The week after deadline fever brings more deadlines

After last week's frenetic Republican efforts to shove as many embarrassing bills through as possible before deadline, the focus now shifts to the bills that will implement the Republican budget.  March 28 is the deadline for passing revenue and appropriations bills out of their originating house, so we'll now see an effort to strip public schools of a serious amount of funding over the next nine days.
Five days after that is the committee deadline to report bills out of committee that have passed the other chamber.  There will no doubt be several controversial bills killed or amended heavily in committee by April 3, so this is a deadline to keep your eye on.  For those of you who were dismayed to see the House attempt social and racial reconstruction over the last few weeks, you have hope that the Senate may decline to play to the whims of nativists and misogynists and refuse to let some of the more troublesome bills out of committee.  We'll find out this week which committees have been assigned some of the more abhorrent legislation such as HB 1196 (mandated transvaginal ultrasounds), HB 1390 (force abortion clinic to be hospital-affiliated), and HB 488 (Alabama-style immigration bill).  Once those bills are assigned, the chairmen will have ultimate control over the fate of those bills, as they can kill them by not bringing them up for a committee vote.

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