The Oklahoma State Senate will begin the process required for a formal vote on a right to work measure Tuesday morning, according to Senate President Pro Tempore Stratton Taylor. Senators had originally planned to begin that process last Wednesday, but Lieutenant Governor Mary Fallin derailed the scheduled action.
Senator Taylor, in discussion with the Senate Majority Leader, has scheduled the action for 9:30 a.m. Tuesday morning.
"We tried to start this process last week, but the Lieutenant Governor effectively blocked us from carrying through with it. Hopefully, after we address the issue, no matter what the outcome is, we can get back to the orderly business of government and put an end to all the grandstanding,"
said Senator Taylor.
Under the Senate rules (Rule 12-2), the Senate Majority Leader, not the presiding officer, determines in what order legislation is considered by the full Senate. After consulting with Senator Taylor, the Majority Leader scheduled the 9:30 a.m. Tuesday morning vote.
Because the Senate rules do not allow the status of a bill to be changed without an official action by the Senate, lawmakers will bring up the legislation in the form that it was left at the end of business last Wednesday and proceed from there.
When the Senate recessed Wednesday, members had approved a "motion to advance" HB 2659, the legislation to which a right to work amendment was proposed. Approving a "motion to advance" a bill effectively cuts off any amendments to a piece of legislation.
In order to consider the right to work amendment in HB 2659, two actions will have to be taken:
"It's important that we adhere to the rules, just as we did last week when we first addressed this issue. I know some people would have the Senate ignore or violate its own rules, but we have to follow the rules regardless of who is in the chair. Just as Republican Senators Dunlap and Coffee have followed the rules when they presided, so too must everyone else who sits in the presiding officer's chair," said Senator Taylor.