House Democrats walkout of vote
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House Democrats walkout of vote

Date: April 27, 2009
By: Theo Keith
State Capitol Bureau
Links: HB 22

Intro: Democrats on the House Rules Committee walked out of a vote to decide how to spend more than $1 billion in federal stimulus money.

Theo Keith has more from Jefferson City. 

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OutCue: SOC

The House Rules Committee hearing was a quick one for the five Democrats on the body.

Actuality:  CALLO1.WAV
Run Time: 00:11
Description: "So I think I'm gonna get up and leave, with all due respect to the committee, but out of the utmost respect for the rules and the institution of the House. And I would ask that colleagues on both sides follow me in not participating in the sham process."

And with those words from St. Louis County Democratic Representative Don Calloway, the Republicans had the meeting room to themselves.

Democrats were angry over rules and procedure.

They said the stimulus bill in front of the committee should have been in front of the House Budget Committee, which handles most appropriations bills.

From the State Capitol, I'm Theo Keith, Newsradio 1120 KMOX.


Intro: After Democrats walked out of a House Rules Committee vote Monday to spend more than $1 billion in federal stimulus money, the war of words began.

Theo Keith has more from Jefferson City. 

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House Rules Committee Democrats left over a rules and procedure dispute.

Then both sides started name-calling.

Republican Floor Majority Leader Steven Tilley says Democrats should have stuck around.

Actuality:  TILLEY4.WAV
Run Time: 00:12
Description: "Point of orders - sometimes they're ruled in my favor, sometimes they're ruled against me. But, win or lose, I stay there and continue the game, and they decided to pick up their toys and go home. And that's their prerogative, it's not good government, but it's certainly their prerogative."

Then Columbia Democratic Representative Stephen Webber jumped on the blame game.

Actuality:  WEBBER4.WAV
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Description: "Their caucus is so disorganized, it's impossible to predict what's going to happen. They don't have the leadership over there to give us any sort of clarity or to even guide their own caucus, much less the whole building."

The committee's seven Republicans voted the bill, which includes a $1 billion income tax cut, on to the full House.

From the State Capitol, I'm Theo Keith, Newsradio 1120 KMOX.


Intro: Republicans on the House Rules Committee approved more than $1 billion in federal stimulus spending without funding a Columbia cancer center that attracts Missourians across the state.

Theo Keith has more Jefferson City. 

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The House Rules Committee approved Republican Floor Majority Leader Steven Tilley's amendment to strip $31 million from the Ellis Fischel Cancer Center.

Tilley drafted the amendment after Columbia Democrat Stephen Webber and the committee's other Democrats walked out over a rules dispute.

He then offered it up to the remaining Republicans in the room.

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Description: TILLEY: "And with that, Mr. Speaker, I'd like to inquire the gentleman from the Boone-Webber district."

PARSONS: "Seeing, Represenative, seeing that the gentleman from the Webber district is not here..."

TILLEY: "Well, the reason I wanted to inquire him is I'm taking $31-point-something million from his district and I wanted to see what he thought about that."


Tilley says he shouldn't have to defend other lawmakers' districts.

Webber says the attack will only hurt the people of Missouri.

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Description: "I understand they were angry that we walked out, I understand that they were angry that we called it a sham process and we pointed out their blatant violation of the rules, but to turn around and take that out on people in the state who are looking for hope, who are trying to survive cancer, to me was incredibly vindictive."

Webber says he'll work to find other funding for the cancer center.

The center did not have an immediate comment.

House Budget Committee Chairman Allen Icet, who sponsored the original stimulus bill, wouldn't rule out finding funding for Fischel.

Tilley's amendment diverts the money from the cancer center to community colleges and universities across the state, but none to the University of Missouri's Columbia campus.

From the State Capitol, I'm Theo Keith, Newsradio 1120 KMOX.


Intro: The House Budget Committee's chairman wouldn't rule out finding money for a new Ellis Fischel Cancer Center in Columbia, after Republicans on the House Rules Committee wiped out funding.

Theo Keith has more from Jefferson City. 

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Republican Majority Floor Leader Steven Tilley's amendment to strip $31 million from a new Ellis Fischel Cancer Center passed overwhelmingly.

That action kills Fischel funding.

But Budget Committee Chairman Allen Icet says the money could find its way into a spending bill before the end of the legislative session.

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Description: "Well, it's a process. We've got - until the Senate sends that bill to the governor, we've got a long way to go."

Icet says Missourians across the state use the cancer center.

Columbia's represenative, Democrat Stephen Webber, wasn't around to defend his district because he had walked out of the hearing with other members of his party over a rules dispute.

From the State Capitol, I'm Theo Keith, Newsradio 1120 KMOX.



Intro: After Democrats walked out of the hearing Monday, Republicans on the House Rules Committee passed a $1 billion income tax cut using federal stimulus money.

Theo Keith has more from the State Capitol. 

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The tax cut would lower the state income tax one-half percent.

Before Democrats left the hearing over a rules dispute, Jackson County Democratic Representative John Burnett questioned the legality of the plan.

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Description: "I saw Speaker Richard's interview Friday on Fox News. And Speaker Richard told the nation that the Office of - the OMB - and the vice president told him that we ought not do what this bill proposes to do, that it was illegal."

Republicans dismissed the idea that the tax cut was illegal under the federal guidelines for spending stimulus money.

The plan is the second option put forth in the last week to spend federal funds.

Lawmakers have until May 8 to pass appropriations bills.

From the State Capitol, I'm Theo Keith, Newsradio 1120 KMOX.