July 07, 2006

Republicans Win Round 1 Thanks To Democratic Defections

Though far from over, and still outnumbered in both houses, the GOP is ahead after the first full day of the special session (RMN has a comprehensive round-up of the legislation before the special session from both parties at the link):
In a stunning close to the first day of the special session, five Senate Democrats late Thursday sided with Republicans to send voters a measure limiting services to illegal immigrants.

The defections made Republicans giddy, adding a dramatic twist in a fast-moving session likely to set the stage for a bitter November election.

The proposal to limit government services was the cornerstone of the Democrats' agenda, but one they had expected to be signed into law and put into effect immediately, and not be put on the ballot.

In committee, Democrats fought Republican efforts to put Senate Bill 1 on the ballot, but were thwarted on the floor when a single Democrat, Sen. Ron Tupa, of Boulder, broke ranks, leading other Democrats to change their votes and side with the GOP.
It still needs to pass more voting hurdles, but the GOP has a leg up now on the issue of getting the legislation to the voters, and can argue that any block by Democrats is a thwarting of public input on the matter, a clear winner for the GOP come November.

Highlight of the day:
Some Democrats were livid and referred to Tupa as "Dead Man Walking."
Lowlight: the Denver Post labelling the GOP victory a "hijacking" full of "political posturing".

Just proves the difference/bias in reporting, as one outlet characterizes the outcome a result of "defection" as opposed to something clearly more negative--"hijacking".

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