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Minnesota House adopts new rules

by Dan Burns on February 14, 2013

I blogged last week about a proposed rule change in the Minnesota House of Representatives, that would end the practice of trying to tack on last-second amendments to proposed legislation during final debate.  Said proposal has become reality.

In a 69-59 vote early Tuesday morning, the House approved new Permanent Rules, which guide bill movement and floor debate. The vote followed a contentious, 9.5-hour debate, much of which centered on a new requirement that amendments be filed the day before a bill goes to the floor for debate…

“Too often, we’ve made mistakes as a result of doing amendments late in the night and on the fly, without preparation,” said House Majority Leader Erin Murphy (DFL-St. Paul). The prefiling requirement will also give the public more time to read and react to amendments, she said.

Republicans called the change a power grab by the DFL.

(Session Daily)

It’s obvious that Republicans’ real “problems” with the changes are:

- They end the possibility of using what might be termed “amendment avalanches” as pseudo-filibusters.

- Tea Party crazies, in particular, can no longer grandstand, in front of TPT’s cameras, by offering, for example, last-minute War on Women amendments to every bill that makes it to a final floor debate.

I don’t know whether or not Republicans can still pull the sort of crap that I just noted, in the Senate. If somebody does know, off the top of his or her head, I’d appreciate a comment.

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