Hall’s power-sharing proposal ignored as House and Senate formally adjourn for 2023 ⋆ Michigan Advance

A little flash, but not much fanfare, officially ended the Michigan Legislature’s session on Tuesday.

While Thursday was the last day this year that lawmakers voted on bills, Tuesday officially marked the end of the 2023 legislative year, as the Democratic-led House and Senate adjourned. condition At noon, as expected. But that doesn’t mean there weren’t some political shots on the way out.

While no senators addressed the chamber before it was pronounced on schedule by Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist, who serves as Senate president, the Michigan House of Representatives was a different story. Before postponement, Minority Leader Matt Hall (R-Richland Twp.) introduced a proposed resolution that would require a power-sharing agreement when there are an even number of Republicans and Democrats.

Michigan House leadership is poised for a 54-54 partisan tie with two Democrats leaving soon

While that will soon be the case after state Reps. Lori Stone (D-Warren) and Kevin Coleman (D-Westland) won their mayoral elections last week and will have to resign from their positions, a 54-54 tie is expected. To be temporary only until special elections are held in their two regions, which are strongholds for the Democrats.

Regardless, Hall says bipartisanship should be the norm when the House reconvenes in January.

“The balance of power in the House is a call for bipartisanship, and Michigan lawmakers on both sides of the aisle must heed the call and find common ground,” Hall said. “We must start by crafting a bipartisan power-sharing agreement, and we can work together to achieve results for our state. We can protect taxpayers by charting a more accountable and responsible path forward for economic development. We can protect Michigan students by approving a bipartisan school safety and mental health plan. We can help people drive to work and school by determining how to invest our resources in repairing local roads and bridges. House Republicans focus on Michigander priorities. “We hope Speaker Tate and House Democrats will join us.”

Tate spokeswoman Amber McCann did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

However, Speaker Joe Tate (D-Detroit) made that clear last week House rules Keep Democrats in control. These rules, approved by majority Democrats when they took control of the House of Representatives in January, stipulate that there must be 55 elected Democrats and 55 elected Republicans for a power-sharing agreement to be necessary.

The Hall decision removes this number and simply states that if “the number of duly elected members serving as Democrats is equal to the number of duly elected members serving as Republicans…then the House shall enter into a power-sharing agreement.”

in press release Hall said Tuesday that the agreement “could be terminated at any time by a majority of House members in a record roll call vote.” But after the resolution was introduced on Monday, Hall says Tate “refused to read the resolution during the final session on Tuesday.”

Hall wasn’t the only dissatisfied House Republican on Tuesday.

Rep. Jaime Greene (R-Richmond) expressed disappointment that instead of serving as a full-time legislature, Democrats decided to “pack up the gavel and go home,” referring to the legislative session that ends before December.

Specifically, Greene said she would have liked to vote on it A bipartisan school safety plan package has been introduced The day after the fatal shooting on February 13 at Michigan State University’s East Lansing campus in which three students were killed. The package will identify ways to address mental health needs within schools, require schools to regularly update safety plans and expand the ways students, teachers and staff can report suspicious or threatening behaviour. The package did not address gun reform.

“I never want to hear anyone say, ‘I’m keeping you in your hopes and prayers’ again, because our hopes and prayers were so much greater than what we did for school safety this year,” Green said. a statement From Rep. Ranjeev Puri (D-Canton) after the Michigan State University shooting.

Michigan State Rep. Jaime Greene speaks to reporters at the end of the legislative year on the House floor on November 14, 2023. (Photo: Anna Liz Nichols)

“We had a bipartisan school safety package that we could have passed in all this legislation that happened in the last two weeks. Did we do that? “No. So I’ll put hopes and prayers on any day to not do anything at all,” Green continued.

Democrats’ response to the Michigan State University shooting was to move on instead Landmark gun reform legislation Which established universal background checks for all gun sales in Michigan, added a “red flag” law with a process to take away guns from those who might pose a threat to themselves or others, and required the safe storage of firearms and ammunition.

While the last time the Michigan Legislature adjourned before December was 1968, both chambers logged more days in session this year than in 2022 when Republicans were in charge of both chambers. According to the Detroit Free Pressthe Michigan House was in session for 97 days in 2023, but only 88 days last year, while the Michigan Senate was in session for 100 days this year and only 82 days in 2022.

Democrats pushed for a November postponed In order to ensure that the law goes into effect in time to determine Michigan’s presidential primary February 27.

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