Press "Enter" to skip to content

Senate conservatives, House Rules chairs continue public quibble over stalled bills

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — The public squabble between members of the Senate Conservative Caucus and Republican House committee chairs continued Thursday — spilling onto social media.

State Sen. Denny Hoskins

Sen. Denny Hoskins, held court on the Senate floor twice this week, lambasting two House committees for blocking Senate legislation, particularly bills that are priorities for conservatives in the upper chamber. Hoskins specifically pointed to two bills — his SB 283 removing a sunset on a higher education grant program for veterans, Sen. Eric Burlison’s SB 145, the HAILEY’S Law bill reforming the state’s Amber Alert system.

SB 283 was up for a vote in Rep. Holly Rehder’s House Rules – Administrative Oversight Committee Thursday morning, but the Republican chairwoman prevented a vote on it, citing Hoskins’ opposition to her bill that would establish a statewide prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP).

State Rep. Holly Rehder

As it stands, Hoskins and other conservatives oppose the creation of a government database, but he told The Missouri Times he hopes the legislation can be brought up before session ends so he can attach amendments to it.

After Rehder thwarted a vote on his bill this morning, Hoskins said, “That’s pretty petty and shameful to hold up a veterans survivor bill.”

Other members of the Conservative Caucus came to his defense on social media.

“Veterans issues are important to my constituents and I — why would someone hold hostage help for surviving spouses and kids?” Sen. Bill Eigel tweeted.

“Has [Rehder] lost her principles? Stop this shameful pettiness,” Sen. Andrew Koenig said.

Not to be outdone, Rehder and Rep. Rocky Miller, the Republican chair of the House Rules – Legislative Oversight Committee also took to Twitter to defend their positions.

“Perhaps you’re having trouble keeping up with the efficiency of the House Rules Committee. We voted this program out of our Rules Committee on March 5th,” Rehder said. “House Bill 715 sponsored by Rep. Lynch. Looks like it’s been sitting in the Senate just waiting to be voted on.”

“There’s two legislative bodies working here. House Bill 715, the Veteran’s Survivor Grant Program, is ready for a final vote in the Senate,” she said in another tweet. “So what that means is … it could actually be done as soon as the [Missouri Senate] wants.”

Miller added: “I thought that bill sounded familiar. We voted on it so long ago, I must have forgotten. I’m sure the Senate will do the right thing and vote it out.”

HB 715, from Republican Rep. Steve Lynch, passed out of the Senate Veterans and Military Affairs Committee in late April.