Idaho House GOP takes revenge on Dems by voting down child disability bill
Image has not been found. URL: http://images.americanindependent.com/2010/08/MahurinElephant_Thumb.jpgThere are petty political battles happening in the Gem State.
The Idaho House Wednesday voted down a bill that amends an existing law related to early childhood and early intervention services.
What’s telling is that the bill flew through the Senate 27-8 three weeks earlier, when it was sponsored by Republican Sen. Tim Corder. But in the House, where the bill was sponsored by Democratic Rep. Phylis King, the bill lost 52-12.
The Associated Press account of the story characterizes the failed bill as a measure that would “help children with special needs get access to early intervention services.”
Actually, the measure in question just updates existing code related to the Early Childhood Coordinating Council previously created by an executive order from former Gov. Dirk Kempthorne.
Corder said the bill created some controversy in terms of language changes, for example, swapping out “children with disabilities” to “special needs,” and making the age restrictions broader (“infants and toddlers” to “young children”), making some members in both chambers believe the definition as to who would have access to these services was being expanded. However, Corder said he had heard, as AP reported, that the reason for slamming down on the measure was retaliation.
According to the AP, Rep. Mark Shirley has openly stated that the Republican intent was to punish Democrats for delays in the House. Corder said that he’s heard from his Republican colleagues in the House that Democrats have been forcing full readings of bills on the floor and extending debates, which delay their passage.
House Rep. Eric R. Anderson, a Republican, said “it appeared” that the bill failed because of retaliation, but it is not why he voted no.