Veto Session is here. On Wednesday, September 14, 2016, Missouri’s General Assembly will gather once again under the dome for the express purpose of overriding Governor Jay Nixon’s vetoes of legislation passed by both chambers during this year’s legislative session.
They have already made Governor Nixon the most overridden governor in Missouri history during past veto sessions, and this year, they are well positioned to add to their number.
Senate bill 656 would let anyone, legally allowed to possess a firearm, to carry a firearm for self-defense without a permit. It also strengthens Missouri’s Stand Your Ground laws, expands Castle Doctrine protections, and provides members of the military with extra time to renew their carry permits.
It passed the House of Representatives with 114 AYE votes to 36 NOES. 109 votes is a veto proof majority in the House. In the Senate, it passed with 24 AYE votes and 8 NOES. 23 votes is enough to override the Governor’s veto in the Senate.
As a Senate bill, it will have to first be overridden in the State Senate and sent to the House. The main obstacle in the Senate is a possible Democratic filibuster. The question is will Republican majority move the previous question (PQ) to end a potential filibuster if necessary.
Even with the numbers in our favor, the anti-gun zealots have been hard at work during the interim attempting to peel off votes. They have even enlisted the help of law enforcement in opposition to Constitutional Carry.
The opposition to SB656 has been somewhat effective in trying to reduce the vote count. There are news reports that Representatives Caleb Jones, Donna Lichtenegger, and Kathy Swan are questioning their previous pro-gun votes and may not vote to override the Governor’s veto. That said, do not believe everything you read. Rep. Caleb Jones has since been on the record that his vote to override Gov. Nixon’s veto is solid.
If you want the Missouri Legislature to override Governor Nixon’s veto of SB656, you need to pick up the phone and dial your Senator and Representative. Look up their phone number here and tell them you want them to override Governor Nixon’s veto of SB656.
House bill 1631 requires voters to present proper identification, like a photo identification, to participate in an election. We are advocating for the override because the policy will require a photo identification to help protect election integrity. This is a common sense measure.
The House passed Photo ID with 112 AYE votes to 38 NOES. The Senate passed it with 24 AYES to 8 NO votes. As a House bill, it begins veto session in the House of Representatives where they are confident in its prospects.
The question on everyone’s mind is how functional the State Senate will be. If they have to PQ on SB656, will they also PQ on Photo ID? There is more than one school of thought on this. One says yes. This is veto session afterall. It is more partisan and moving the previous question to end a filibuster is perhaps seen as less taboo than it is during the normal legislative session. The other school of thought is that the Republican majority will want to avoid damaging the collegiality of the Senate and cut a deal with the Democratic caucus to avoid the filibuster. Such a deal could sacrifice Photo ID for the gun bill.
Truthfully, this is all speculation. The only people who likely know the Senate’s plan is its leadership team: Senators Ron Richard; Mike Kehoe; and Bob Onder.
The fact remains that the numbers are on our side to override both SB656 and HB1631. If both chambers decide they want to work together to get it done, they can. We are cautiously optimistic that they will accomplish both and more.
Photo ID is something that has eluded conservatives for years. By close of business on Wednesday, Missouri could be well on its way to having a Photo ID law and becoming a Constitutional Carry state with an improved stand your ground law. Both would be big victories for conservatives. Both are doable.
What can you do?
Do not take anything for granted! Take five or ten minutes to look up your local State Representative and Senator and call their offices. When you reach the staff, be polite and professional and tell them that you want your legislators to vote in favor of overriding SB656 (Constitutional Carry) and HB1631 (Photo ID).
Click here to look up your State Senator and State Representative and call their offices now. It is only takes five minutes! Take action now. Thank you!