“We have reached an impasse,” Republican House Speaker Frank McNulty said. “It is unfortunate that there will be items that will not receive consideration by the House tonight because of this impasse.”
Then chants of “shame on you” erupted from gay rights supporters sitting in the Colorado House.
McNulty told reporters that lawmakers had reached an impasse and civil unions would die along with several other bills, including an overhaul of school discipline policies and setting a blood-level marijuana limit for drivers.
The bill had already cleared a key hurdle Tuesday when Republican Representative Cheri Gerou joined Democrats to advance the measure out of its final committee for consideration by the full chamber.
Gerou said, “This isn’t a partisan conversation. This is, in my mind, this is a basic human rights conversation.”
Apparently, though, not all the Republicans in Colorado fight for human rights.
So, how did this happen? I mean, enough Republicans supported the bill to see it through to passage, and yet it died before ever reaching the floor for a vote.
Filibuster. The GOP filibustered long and hard—because they do love the sound of their own voices—forcing the bill to be shunted aside without a vote.
Democrats sought to block that GOP filibuster when it became clear that Republicans were talking at length about other measures, delaying any action on civil unions. And how did the Repoublicans respond to that Democratic challenge? They abruptly stopped working.
They, in effect, took their ball and went home, rather than stay and discuss a bill that seemed destined to pass, easily, and was certain to be signed into law by Governor Hickenlooper.
Unfortunately, for now, Republicans control the House by a 33-32 margin, even though enough of their members supported the legislation to pass it.
That’s the GOP. And, hopefully, the people of Colorado will wise up and vote those human rights obstructionists out of office.
It seems that Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper has announced that he will call lawmakers into a special legislative session in order to resolve that Civil Unions bill, along with several other bills.
Hickenlooper's announcement was sparked by what he called an "overwhelming need" to discuss the civil unions measure. It died late Tuesday on legislative maneuvering from the GOP. He will announce the details of the special session today.
Republican House Speaker Frank McNulty did not immediately respond or comment. The Democrats have accused him of refusing to call the bill for a vote, even though it had enough support to pass.
Hickenlooper's announcement came at about the same time that President Barack Obama announced he now supports same-sex marriage.
The tide is changing.