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Milwaukee Democratic senator proposes two-thirds vote requirement for lame-duck bills

December 17, 2018
Sen. Tim Carpenter, D-Milwaukee

A Democratic state senator, responding to the recent lame-duck push by GOP lawmakers to curtail the powers of the incoming Democratic governor and attorney general, has proposed requiring a two-thirds super-majority vote to pass any future lame-duck bills.

Sen. Tim Carpenter, D-Milwaukee, announced the proposal Monday. It would apply to any bills, resolutions or appointments brought up in future legislative “lame duck” sessions.

The “lame-duck” term applies to the brief period when some lawmakers and executive officers are outgoing -- after an election but before newly elected officials take office.

Carpenter’s release said the impetus for the proposal is the “sad reality” of what he called a “power grab” by legislative Republicans in the lame-duck session earlier this month.

“This will ensure that future such sessions are not just used as occasions to take power away from an incoming Governor and Attorney General strictly for partisan purposes and shenanigans,” Carpenter said.

The measure is unlikely to advance while the Legislature is led by the same GOP leaders who orchestrated the recent lame-duck push.

Outgoing Republican Gov. Scott Walker signed the lame-duck bill package late Friday.

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