Jay Visits Colorado House

February 18, 2014|Posted in: Blog Posts

What just happened on the floor of the Colorado House this morning?

I was the guest of one of our well-known legislators on the floor of the Colorado House again today, during the session.

I was able, once again, to have some in-depth conversations with some of the Republican representatives on the floor. There is no substitute for “being there”, I have found. The picture is much clearer when you are watching the process unfold.

What was remarkable to me about this morning’s session was the unanimity of the Republicans on virtually all the legislation that came forward today.

There were almost never any “No” votes on any legislation, regardless of which side of the aisle carried the bill.

During all the years I have sat on the floor of the House (in the seat that a legislator has kindly reserved for me) and watched them “make sausage”, I have never seen this degree of unanimity in legislation. Last year, and the year before were completely different. There would be huge floor battles over legislation, taking hours and hours of debate. The conservative view lost (due to the lack of conservatives in the body), but only after a protracted battle.

Did the Dems just offer legislation that we could adopt without objection? Unlikely, I think. Are we Republicans just tired of fighting? Also unlikely. Even legislation carried by Republican legislators garnered near-unanimous Democrat support.

In the end of the session, I left the floor shaking my head, wondering about the meaning of what I had just seen. Did I see a “perfect storm” of bipartisanship? Have the Dems all of a sudden turned away from their “hard-ball politics”, where they ram-down leftist legislation through use of their majorities in the House and Senate? Not likely, either.

I will ponder for the coming days what I have witnessed this morning, and what it means for my beloved Colorado. I, for one, like the absence of rancor and partisanship. I sincerely hope it’s not a sign that the GOP minority has begun to lose its backbone.