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History of Veto Sessions

September 12, 1995
State Capital Bureau

JEFFERSON CITY - In the last century, only twice has Missouri's legislature overridden a governor's veto.

By all appearances, 1995 will be the norm.

"As far as overriding, they're uneventful," said Gene Rose, communications director for the Missouri House. "But sometimes they're tied with significant events."

During last year's veto session, Gov. Mel Carnhan spiced things up by calling a special legislative session to impeach former Secretary of State Judi Moriarty.

And the year before, in 1993, a joint special session was held to deal with the Great Flood.

But this year, unless there are unexpected surprises, the veto session will be dull.

There may be talk about who will run for House Speaker once Bob Griffin, D-Cameron, resigns, but those will involve private discussions away from the TV cameras.

For months there was speculation that Sen. John Schneider, D-St. Louis County, would try to override Carnahan's veto on a bill that would require women to consult case managers before getting an abortion.

But the build-up for an anti-abortion confrontation with the governor ended last week when Schneider announced he would not launch an override effort.

Instead, Schneider said he would reintroduce the bill in the 1996 legislative session, which starts in January.

And, the four other lawmakers whose legislation stopped at the governor's say they won't try to get their bills passed after all.

Every year, the Missouri Legislature reconvenes to reconsider bills the governor vetoed during the last session. This year, there were five, plus a number of budget appropriations that Carnahan line-item vetoed.

"There were very few bills vetoed, and that makes a difference," said Rep. Sheila Lumpe, D-St. Louis County. She said when there are more vetoes, legislators tend to bring legislation up for reconsideration.

Lumpe, who chairs the House Budget Committee, said she isn't planning to attempt an override.

"The vetoes did have some reasoning behind them that made sense," Lumpe said.

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