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A dramatic and tense reconvened Idaho legislative session came to an abrupt end Wednesday, when a Senate committee killed three House-passed bills after a nearly-four-hour hearing, and both houses called it quits for the year.
The House has passed SJM 105, a Senate-passed memorial expressing the Legislature’s disapproval of the Biden Administration’s vaccine mandates, on a voice vote with no debate. House Majority Caucus Chair Megan Blanksma, R-Hammett, briefly presented the measure to the House, noting that it “indicates the strong opposition of the Idaho Legislature to these executive mandates.”
In a turbulent day of lawmaking at Idaho’s newly reconvened legislative session on Monday, no new bills passed, and a top priority of GOP legislative leaders — allocating $2 million in state taxpayer money to a new legal fund to underwrite lawmakers intervening in federal vaccine lawsuits — was defeated.
BOISE — In a turbulent day of lawmaking at Idaho’s newly reconvened legislative session on Monday, no new bills passed, and a top priority of GOP legislative leaders — allocating $2 million in state taxpayer money to a new legal fund to underwrite lawmakers intervening in federal vaccine lawsuits — was defeated.
BOISE — Senate Democrats tried and failed to adjourn for the year Monday morning, a move that would short-circuit the newly reconvened legislative session, as GOP senators proposed new bills aimed at COVID-19 mandates.
House Speaker Scott Bedke and Senate President Pro Tem Chuck Winder have already filed a motion to have the Legislature intervene in a multistate lawsuit in Kentucky over the Biden Administration's vaccine mandates, though JFAC just killed the bill to set up a special $2 million litigation fund for that purpose.
The first bill to be voted on in committee during today's newly reconvened regular session of the Idaho Legislature has failed. After debate, the Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee voted 6-12 against a motion to approve HB 409, a proposal from Rep. Sage Dixon to create a "Federal Overreach Legal Defense Fund" and fund it with a $2 million transfer from the state's general fund.
The Idaho Senate convened this morning and read across the desk all seven of the bills introduced this morning in the Senate State Affairs Committee; it then recessed until 3 p.m., but not before Sen. Grant Burgoyne, D-Boise, pushed for a vote to adjourn sine die. It failed on a party-line vote. See below for a full report on the Senate's morning session from Idaho Press reporter Ryan Suppe.