In a report to constituents, Rep. Jake Zimmerman, D-Olivette, said Gov. Jay Nixon deserves praise for his courage in vetoing bills that made no sense and were, for the most part, ignored by the media:
I just returned from an annual ritual, the special legislative session to reconsider bills vetoed by the Governor. It's my great
pleasure to report that we didn't override a single one. Normally this would be a routine affair, but this wasn't a normal year: Governor Nixon, to his great credit, vetoed dozens of bills. As you can imagine, there was a fair amount of grumbling by members (from both parties) whose prized children didn't make it past his desk. But in the end, while a few legislators took to the floor to make their grumbling public, nothing more came of it than that - a useful reminder to a few of my colleagues that there's a new sheriff in town.
This is all noteworthy because it would have been much easier, politically, for the Governor to just sign several of these bills and avoid the headache. But he didn't take the easy road. Instead, he did the right thing. If a bill created conflict, if it dove into
Constitutional gray areas, or if it was just plain dumb, he vetoed it: period. The Governor and his staff deserve praise for these small acts of political courage, especially because the media has paid little attention.
Oh, and this should tell you something about the seriousness of the legislature: the House leadership only made one formal attempt at an override: on a bill to require that every legislator receive a key to the private area in the State Capitol rotunda. (Insert your own snide comment here.)
Anyway, especially after all the unpleasant news in local politics over the past month, it was a pleasure to be back in Jefferson City thinking substantive thoughts for a little while, and it's a pleasure to share the news with you.