I have great admiration for State Senator Greg Lavelle, a Republican. When he was in the House while I was Election Commissioner, then controlled by a good majority by Republicans, he led the charge for my department to pass some 13 bills to help me meed a federal deadline for the new Help America Vote Act signed by President Bush to reform elections in all 50 states.

His word was a good as gold. I needed his support because giving the bills to a Democrat to introduce in a Republican House would have been the kiss of death, the same as if I had given the bills to a Republican in the Senate which was controlled by the Democrats.

Neither party doesn’t give the other the privilege of passing a controversial bill, or sometimes none at all. A sorry story, but that is the way it is and has been for years.

Thus I am disappointed he is trying to make hay because of the system the Democrats have of voting on bills during committee hearings; the legislators don’t take a vote after the hearing is over, they pass the bill around to the committee members later for their signature.

From the point of view from the public who attend the hearings I can understand their frustrations and that of Senator Lavelle. However he forgets when he was in the majority in the House this is the same way the game was played.

Every time I went before the Election Committee in the House, I never knew how they voted because they voted after we left the room. I had to have a gut feeling by the tone of the meeting. Often we didn’t have a meeting and I would go through channels to have the bill brought up because my deadline was nearing. And that was a lot of work to get a bill on the agenda.

I’m not being critical of either party, because they both follow this procedure it is the name of the game. But please, don’t try to grab the headlines and blame the other party of doing something you would do if you were in the majority.


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