Sabo Resolution Takes Aim at Lame-Duck

Constitutional amendment would call for a two-thirds vote to pass legislation after statewide elections
Thursday, February 7, 2019

LANSING — State Rep. Terry Sabo (D-Muskegon) proposed a resolution today that would make changes to the legislative process during future lame-duck sessions. House Joint Resolution D would amend the state constitution to require a two-thirds vote to pass any bill considered during those post-election sessions.

“This past lame duck served as an especially egregious example of the lack of accountability that exists in the weeks between an election and when a legislator leaves office,” said Sabo. “The Legislature voted on around 400 bills in just a few weeks – many of which were controversial and deserved much more consideration, debate and public input. By requiring a two-thirds vote rather than a simple majority, we put another accountability mechanism in place that will help put an end to pushing through questionable legislation in the dead of night.”

Lame-duck sessions have come under scrutiny in recent years due to the large quantity of controversial legislation that is considered during a short amount of time, often pushed by elected officials no longer fearful of electoral consequences for bad or unpopular legislation. Proposed amendments to the constitution must pass each chamber of the Legislature with a two-thirds vote, and must also be approved by the electors to become effective.

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