Late in the day today, the Senate was ready to begin its litany of roll call votes to close out the budget debate. But there was confusion about how the new roll call statute should be applied. The official ruling was that the rule actually trumped the statute in this case, though Rules Chairman Larry Martin says they were the same.
He added, “I realize there’s an effort underway to stretch this process out and to make it appear much more lengthy and laborious than it otherwise will be.”
But the confusion and the chair’s decision that the Senate rule held precedence was enough to give critics of the statute something to crow about.
Voting on each section of the 2011-2012 budget bill got underway about 4:00 p.m.