KIRKSVILLE, Mo. — Legislative leaders won’t confirm specifically to what will be brought up during veto session, but they will get close.
House Speaker Tim Jones, R-Eureka told The Missouri Times that he plans to bring up any and every bill that are at or near 109 votes — the among needed to secure an override — during veto session, which begins in just more than two weeks.
He said just about everyone was at their summer caucus meeting a week ago in St. Louis, with about five to seven absent members who all had contacted leadership beforehand.
“By and large, the caucus was very much in favor or in agreement of bringing up as many bills as possible,” Jones said.
However, there were a few bills that Jones said didn’t come up, though he didn’t mention any specifics as to which those were.
“Many of these people were surprise about the vetoed bills — 29 bills,” Jones emphasized. “They’re disappointed in the governor for his lack of leadership on some of these issues.”
Jones pointed out a subject he said has flown under the media radar regarding two vetoed Senate bills from Democratic Sens. Maria Chappelle-Nadal and Kiki Curls. He said it’s his understanding that those bills will be brought up in the upper chamber during veto session.
Lauren Hieger, Senate Majority Caucus Communications Coordinator, said ultimately, it’s the decision of an individual sponsoring Senator as to whether they will motion for an override on their legislation.
“However, we anticipate that the Senate will bring up the majority of the vetoed bills for consideration,” she said in a statement.
Jones expressed his frustration with Gov. Jay Nixon’s involvement, or lack thereof as he said, something he has done many times during the interim.
“If he has issues with a bill that could be rectified during session, I would rather that than flying around the state in his fancy jet arguing against them,” he said, adding that he thinks Nixon has “wasted an entire summer.”
The key discussion point for veto session, both now and during months past, is whether or not the legislature will override the much-debated income tax bill, House Bill 253. With several Republican legislators such as Dennis Fowler, Don Phillips and Nate Walker announcing they will be voting against the override — and many others who are being rumored to do the same — the odds of an override are seemingly unlikely, according to numbers.