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General Assembly Won’t Override Malloy’s Vetoes

by | Jul 17, 2015 11:36am () Comments | Commenting has expired | Share
Posted to: Education, State Capitol

Christine Stuart file photo Despite pressure from one of the teacher unions, House Speaker Brendan Sharkey announced Friday that there wasn’t enough support to override any of Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s nine vetoes.

“The general consensus among our members, and in light of some of the governor’s concerns, is that these issues would be best re-looked at during the next regular session, therefore we will not be scheduling any override votes,” Sharkey said in a statement.

A spokesman for the Senate Democratic caucus said based on feedback from their members they also agreed not to attempt to override any of the governor’s vetoes.

The Connecticut Education Association had encouraged lawmakers to override the veto of a bill that outlined qualifications for Education Commissioner.

The bill, which specified that education commissioners must have at least five years’ experience as a teacher and three years as an administrator, passed the House 138-5 and got unanimous support in the Senate before being squelched by Gov. Malloy.

Mark Waxenberg, executive director of the Connecticut Education Association, said Friday that “Educators across the state are shaking their heads in disbelief today wondering why legislators who overwhelmingly passed HB 6977, An Act Establishing Qualifications for the Commissioner of Education, have today decided against an override of the governor’s veto.”

He said state law requires high standards of other commissioners, including the Correction Commissioner. He said the Correction Commissioner who oversees prisoners is required to have specific industry experience, “while the state’s education chief, who safeguards our most precious resource, our children, is not required to have education experience.”

Waxenberg said it’s an issue they will revisit during the next legislative session.

It would be rare for Democratic lawmakers to override a Democratic governor. Lawmakers have declined to override any of Malloy’s vetoes since he took office in 2011.

The General Assembly has overridden previous governors. It overrode 15 bills during former Republican Gov. M. Jodi Rell’s tenure and 17 bills during former Gov. Lowell P. Weicker’s tenure, according to historical records.

“We look forward to working with the legislature to move Connecticut into the future and make even more progress for residents during the next one,” Devon Puglia, Malloy’s spokesman, said Friday.

But House and Senate Republicans said it shouldn’t only be up to the majority party to make the decision about legislation that received near unanimous support.

“Failing to challenge the governor on his vetoes is putting politics before policy,” Senate Republican Leader Len Fasano and House Republican Leader Themis Klarides, said in a statement.

“Simply accepting the governor’s vetoes is failing to represent and protect our constituents. We have a constitutional duty to the public to reassess these bills,” the two added.

They said all the House and Senate Republicans would be in attendance for Monday’s constitutionally mandated session.

“To gavel in and out without any reconsideration and without hearing input from all lawmakers violates our constitutional duty and therefore our obligations as elected representatives,” Fasano and Klarides said.

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(5) Archived Comments

posted by: art vandelay | July 17, 2015  7:50pm

art vandelay

Democrats have nothing to fear.  Come 2016 unions will unconditionally support ever Democrat running for political office.

posted by: Increasinglyfedup | July 17, 2015  7:57pm

The apparent unwillingness of democratic legislators in both the CT Senate and House to push back against their Supreme Leader’s arrogance and obstinacy is nothing short of despicable. When the CT Legislature votes overwhelming (138-5) to establish educational credentials for future State Commissioners of Education, members of both political parties should have the will to stand by their vote.  That the democrats have buckled under to Governor Malloy’s unbridled power demonstrates their lack of conviction on this issue.  You have until Monday’s “constitutionally-mandated session” to show your political courage - otherwise, you deserve to be voted out of office in upcoming election.

John Bestor
Sandy Hook, CT

Sent from my iPad

posted by: art vandelay | July 18, 2015  2:45pm

art vandelay

Voters who continue to vote for Democrats need to realize that one the election is over they could care less about their constituents.  Their allegiances are first and for most to the Unions.  Second it’s to the Party which is controlled by the Unions.  Democrats have proven time and time again, no matter how unpopular their vote might be, they will always get re-elected.

posted by: johnnyb | July 19, 2015  5:14pm

Sharkey is really embarrassing himself with this butt kissing line of governance. What disapointment he has been. Vote him out!

posted by: meridenite | July 20, 2015  11:33am

Passes 36-0 in senate and 138-5 in house and dems won’t bring up for over-ride wow just wow.

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