Skelos On Gun Control: ‘Perhaps We Did Act In Haste’
Seante Republican Leader Dean Skelos said that while he found Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin’s comments on Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s legislative tactics “inapporpriate” he did say that the chamber may have acted too quickly on the sweeping gun control law last month.
McLaughlin earlier today said Cuomo’s push for the law would have made dictators like Hitler and Mussolini proud. He later apologized.
But the issue of whether messages of necessity should be used to waive the three-day aging process on controversial and complex bills remains a potent one, especially after the gun control law was approved.
“I understand the concern about the use of the message of necessity,” Skelos said at a news conference. “As I reflect back, perhaps we did act in haste and you’ll see that there are going to be amendments to fix some of the mistakes, but I also think that that type of language is inappropriate.”
Republicans have been criticized by conservatives for the way in which the measure was passed and going along with Cuomo’s push for the law (the Senate GOP has noted the measure included provisions to stem gun violence and criminal activity, which they said would not have gotten into the law without their negotiating for it).
Cuomo today in Potsdam defended the messages of necessity by pointing out that it is the Legislature who must ask for them.
Skelos said that he expects his GOP conference, which is in a governing coalition with five independent Democratic lawmakers, would be briefed on chapter amendments to the law next week.
Republicans at the time the law passed pointed to what they said are flaws in the measure’s language, including whether there is a carve-out provision for law enforcement.
Democratic Sen. Terry Gipson meanwhile is pushing a separate bill that would restrict voting hours between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m.
Skelos noted today that the Senate already has a provision to limit post-midnight votes, enacted after an ailing lawmaker died after a marathon vote.
“I think it’s totally appropriate and I think we can operate under those rules, but there are times when you are going to go a bit past midnight,” Skelos said. “But you’ve seen as members of the press that it’s the exception to than the rule of us closing down early and working all night.”
Skelos also took issue with the concern that the Legislature is being steamrolled by a popular and powerful governor, saying that last year the GOP conference didn’t approve the minimum wage increase, though it was actually a proposal initially from Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver.
“I don’t think we rubberstamp,” Skelos said. “I know that there are a number of proposals that the governor had last year that we did not adopt such as the minimum wage that we did not adopt.”
|Print article||This entry was posted by Nick Reisman on February 5, 2013 at 5:30 pm, and is filed under Dean Skelos. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.|