November 10, 2008

A message from DE Talk Radio's Dave Burris

Sign the petition.

In this election cycle, a little-known first-term Senator from Illinois challenged his party’s establishment candidate. And won.

In this election cycle, a statewide elected official decided it was “his time,” and took on the Democratic establishment. And won.

Barack Obama and Jack Markell proved that the status quo doesn’t have to be so. And in the process, a lot of people have been empowered to make change.

Now’s your chance. We have seven weeks to change Delaware forever: by ending the desk-drawer veto.

For the uninitiated, the “desk-drawer veto” is the power of a committee chairperson in the state Senate to take a bill and deny any action on it. The bill goes into a desk drawer, never to be seen again. It is that extraordinary power that has been the cause of death for bills as varied as tax cuts and spending increases, marriage protection amendments and gay rights legislation, labor-friendly wage hikes and business-friendly tax credits. I guarantee that there’s a bill that you support that has died a slow, painful death in a Senate desk drawer.

But it doesn’t have to be so. In a few short weeks, the Delaware Legislature will convene again, and the first order of business for the Senate will be to pass the rules which will govern the body for the legislative session. In that vote lies the future of the desk-drawer veto. The rules can be changed this year to reflect the rules already in operation in the House of Representatives that say that any bill must have action taken in committee within 10 legislative days.

But it will not happen without the most severe pressure. We need calls and letters sent to elected officials. Preferably calls.

We have created an online petition to kick things off. Go to http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/no-more-desk-drawer-veto/ and add your name. Remember in 2007, we got a re-vote and changed the fate of House Bill 4 in the House with just 1,000 signatures on an online petition.

This election has seen many people buck the system and win. Let us be the next who say “Yes, we can.”

Sign the petition.

Call your Senator.

And when you talk to your Senator, don’t just voice your opinion. Ask the question. “Will you vote for the Senate rules if the desk drawer veto is allowed to continue as a sanctioned practice?” Get an answer. Get them on record with a definitive answer.

DaveBurris.com

Posted by Hube at November 10, 2008 04:23 PM | TrackBack

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