Tilley cites cost and timing as reasons for his objection
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Missouri House Speaker Steven Tilley turned down the request of Lieutenant Governor candidate Brad Lager to call a special session regarding the Obamacare mandates.
“With all due respect to Senator Lager, I cannot support a special session for several reasons,” said Tilley. Tilley said a Special Session held during an election year would invite grandstanding and filibustering. He also pointed to the fact an extraordinary session would cost taxpayers a minimum of $25,000 per day with a total bill to Missourians approaching hundreds of thousands.
The House Speaker also noted he is unaware of any action being taken by the Administration between now and January that requires the legislature to act. “There is nothing the legislature could do with a special session that cannot wait until the legislature returns for regular session,” stated Tilley.
“I support Speaker Tilley’s decision,” agreed Majority Floor Leader Tim Jones, R-Eureka. “The cost is too high and I believe there is nothing that can be accomplished in a costly special session that cannot be addressed by the November elections or the legislature in January.”
“Finally, some people may remember last fall, Sen. Lager negotiated a tax credit package with House and Senate leaders, which included hundreds of millions of dollars in new tax credits for the St. Louis China Hub sporting events, numerous other credits and significant tax credit reforms that would have saved the taxpayers over a billion dollars,” said Tilley. “As a result, a special session was called by the governor to address pro-jobs legislation and tax credit reform. Sen. Lager ultimately opposed the package and the session collapsed costing taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars.”
“Without assurances that all sides would agree on the legislative proposals, Sen. Lager’s proposed special session would put hundreds of thousands of tax dollars at risk and could ultimately result in another costly special session with no results for the taxpayers,” Tilley added.
“I would suggest a better, more immediate course of action is for him to join a lawsuit to fix the biased language Secretary of State Robin Carnahan proposed. We need fair and unbiased language so Missouri voters will have the opportunity to determine if they want to require voter or legislative approval to implement certain provisions of Obamacare rather than leaving the decision to unelected bureaucrats,” Tilley said.
Tilley pointed out much of how Obamacare will be implemented in Missouri depends on which individuals fill the roles of governor, legislative leaders, and other statewide officers. Tilley suggested that, after hearing the voters speak, the newly elected legislature and state office holders would have a clear mandate as to the direction the voters have chosen.