Limbo

Obviously, our chance for the chair to call our bill up and get it passed didn’t occur yesterday.  We’re in limbo, waiting for Erwin to be persuaded not to filibuster, or for him to be out of the chamber.  There’s really not much constructive updating I can do at this point.

The Senate will meet three days next week, then two days the following week and that will be the end of the session.  So we have five more meeting days in which to get this done.  Our fate is mostly out of all of our hands; it pretty much rests in the hands of one man who believes alcohol is evil and who fervently desires a return to Prohibition.  A little luck or divine intervention would be really helpful at this point.

Beware that if/when our bill is finally brought back up for a vote, we’ll have no advance warning.  We won’t be on a calendar, we’ll simply be brought up at a moment when the chair believes we can pass.  It could happen pretty quickly.  Of course when that happens we’ll announce it far and wide.

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31 Comments

  1. Big Harry Deehl
    Posted May 1, 2009 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    Swine Flu + Erwin = Success

    Now lets get the two together. :-)

    .

  2. Matt
    Posted May 1, 2009 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    Danner, obviously the meeting with b/w Senator Brooks and Erwin did not go well. Any details you can about their meeting?

  3. Aaron
    Posted May 1, 2009 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    This crap drives me mental. These filibusters deny his group of elected peers the right to do the very thing they are hired to do, vote. Why does our state government give overriding power to any one person by allowing them to just talk? At some point can’t we just call his bluff and make him either cave or filibuster every single day of the session away? Surely he would go hoarse on the third day or so…

  4. bamatt
    Posted May 1, 2009 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    … not to mention the need for a potty break issue. I say let them filibuster for as long as they can hold their bladder but when they have to go pee… filibuster over & you can’t start it back up (& none of this tinkling in a jar at the podium stuff). Do you think we can get that rule enacted as law? LOL

    • Josh
      Posted May 1, 2009 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

      “tinkling in a jar at the podium” HAAA!

      • Josh
        Posted May 8, 2009 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

        Oh man, I swore you were joking, but I just read about Steve Windom allegedly relieving himself in the Senate chamber several years ago.

    • Will
      Posted May 2, 2009 at 10:27 pm | Permalink

      How about some Visine in his water???

  5. ChaseK
    Posted May 1, 2009 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    If Alabama could only get rid of having hypocrits… and I quote from an article about him in the Birmingham News on April 20th…
    “According to Erwin, the Alabama electorate sees the state Senate as a seat of discord and inaction. ”

    Hopefully his Lt. Governor campaign will start affecting his senate time /sigh

  6. ChaseK
    Posted May 1, 2009 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    Forgot to quote his response to that allegation. Erwin responded,”You’ve got to change the leadership in the Alabama Senate,” he said. “You, the people, deserve better.”

  7. Glenn K.
    Posted May 1, 2009 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    It’s really mind boggling. Who calls the bills to be voted on? Lt. Gov Folsom? I know the President Pro Tem (Roger Smitherman – Bham) is very supportive of our bill. Can he bring the bill for a vote?

    • Alan A.
      Posted May 1, 2009 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

      The problem is that if Sen. Erwin is in the Senate chamber, he will filibuster the bill if it comes up for a vote. He has to be absent for the bill to have a chance.

      • Glenn K
        Posted May 3, 2009 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

        I understand the Erwin situation. I’ll repeat the question – who actually brings the bill up for a vote?

        • Danner
          Posted May 3, 2009 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

          Your question seemed predicated on concern over possible difficulty bringing our bill back up. There will be no difficulty bringing it up if the Erwin situation is resolved. Everyone in the Senate leadership who could possibly be serving as chair at any given moment (and thus have the authority to bring out bill up) is very supportive of our efforts.

          The only problem is Erwin. Period.

        • Posted May 4, 2009 at 8:43 am | Permalink

          The presiding officer of the Senate can bring the bill up out of order at the drop of a hat. This could be Folsom, Smitherman, or someone else sitting in the big seat (it would never be Erwin unless he miraculously wins his Lt. Governor bid in 2010). Any of these guys are on our side. So we can bring our bill back up for consideration no problem.

          Edited: I was skooled about state government and corrected my reply.

  8. Beerdude
    Posted May 1, 2009 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    there again, can’t he be kept away from the Senate floor? Nothing crazy, of course, but maybe some well-placed laxative brownies, etc. Drastic times . . .

  9. RollTizzee
    Posted May 2, 2009 at 12:51 am | Permalink

    Pardon my ignorance of the Alabama legislature, but couldn’t the other senators cloture Erwin? I think the majority vote is there and there are plenty of senators who are tiring of Erwin’s antics.

    • Danner
      Posted May 2, 2009 at 10:54 am | Permalink

      The AL Senate simply does not invoke cloture. Period.

      • JAW
        Posted May 2, 2009 at 11:01 am | Permalink

        Seems efficient.

  10. dumblonde
    Posted May 2, 2009 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    This is the first I have heard that Erwin plans to filibuster every time our bill comes up & not let it pass. Is there any truth to it or is someone just running wild with a rumor? I thought we were operating on the hope that Erwin might be satisfied with the bill in it’s amended state…

    • Danner
      Posted May 2, 2009 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

      We don’t know for sure what he’s going to do. Efforts to persuade him continue.

  11. bltmcw
    Posted May 2, 2009 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    The irony is just too perfect when one says, “we’ve got much more important business to be attending to” and then proceed to delay the vote by filibuster.

    • Josh
      Posted May 4, 2009 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

      Truer words never written. “So let’s get it out of the way then, shall we?”

  12. Daniel
    Posted May 2, 2009 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

    I know this is a little off subject. Would we be able to immediately purchase these beers after it is signed by the Governor or would there be a period of waiting? just curious.

  13. Allen Scott
    Posted May 3, 2009 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

    So, why not drop the ammendment if it is a moot point with Erwin?

    If we just have to hope for Erwin to be out of the room, and that is the absolute only way for this bill to pass, then why let any ammendment be tacked on to the bill?

    I’m confused!

    Al

    • Danner
      Posted May 3, 2009 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

      We didn’t accept the amendment to appease Erwin; we accepted it because of Brooks. We just hoped it might help with Erwin, too. A little bonus, maybe.

      We accepted the amendment because without it Ben Brooks would be just as big of an opponent as Erwin. I mentioned this in the blog post below. One hardcore opponent is hard enough to overcome. Two would be certain death.

    • Posted May 4, 2009 at 8:33 am | Permalink

      Also, the amendment was passed with overwhelming support. Only one person voted against it and I think he might have been confused about what they were voting on.

      Taking an amendment off is a proactive process. It can’t be done quietly. It is unlikely that they are going to go on record removing it.

  14. Posted May 4, 2009 at 8:39 am | Permalink

    Just a quick point. These guys are elected lawmakers, not anyone’s puppets. Senator Erwin is under no obligation to tell anyone how long he wants to filibuster. Senator Brooks is under no obligation to tell anyone he intends to introduce an amendment to our bill. We can’t make them vote for cloture.

    In short, we’re not really a part of the legislative process (nor should we be). I know everyone is looking to us for information or action, but we’re just as dependent on the 32 elected senators as anyone else.

  15. dumblonde
    Posted May 4, 2009 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    Still you gotta admit it’s pretty ridiculous when a bill that has overwhelming support (& will make it through by the required majority vote) cannot get passed with the ease that it should…

    • Will Sheppard
      Posted May 4, 2009 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

      Agreed. That’s what kills me about the filibuster. It doesn’t allow voting to proceed. If you or your constituents want to vote something down, that’s exactly what should happen…a vote.

  16. William
    Posted May 5, 2009 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    An alcohol bill is on the floor right now. It seems to be getting filibustered. Came in late so I don’t know if it is ours. I am pretty sure it is.

    • William
      Posted May 5, 2009 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

      Nevermind it was about wine. Sorry

2 Trackbacks

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