The cease-fire only lasted a day. Democrats once again denied a quorum by remaining off the floor Tuesday, preventing the House from conducting business.
Minority Leader Pat Bauer announced that Democrats will file an official protest over Tuesday morning’s House Labor Committee meeting. In the meeting, which passed right-to-work legislation to the floor, chairman Doug Gutwein did not allow public testimony or amendments on the bill. Gutwein said last week’s joint House and Senate committee hearing, at which more than five hours of testimony were heard, satisfied the need for public comment.
Democrats argue that, since the House version of right to work had not officially been handed down to the committee until this week, public testimony on it technically has not been heard. Speaker Brian Bosma says he has no qualms with how the committee process was handled.
“Perhaps not my first choice, but again we have to work with the cards that were dealt here and right now that’s 35 or six members of the Democratic caucus holed up in the basement,” he says.
Bauer says after the committee hearing controversy, the caucus had no choice but to vacate the floor.
“Because if your brother and sister are walking down the street and somebody comes to take a baseball bat and knocks them both down, you don’t stand there and say, ‘Well, I’ll deal with this tomorrow’,” he says.
Bauer says the caucus will decide Wednesday whether to return to the floor.