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Berger: Amendment session 'productive'

Posted September 14, 2011

Just after adjournment this morning, Republican Senate Leader Phil Berger called this week's amendment session "productive."

“It’s a session that I think most people will recognize as the result of the 2010 elections,” he said. “We said when we were running that we wanted to move this state in a different direction, that we want to do things differently from what had been done in the past.”

“Some folks have said ‘Promises made, promises kept,’” he added.

An amendment that would limit the number of years any member could lead the House or Senate was also on this week's agenda, but it stalled over disagreement between the chambers on the number of terms in power it should allow. The House wanted 2 terms (4 years), while the Senate wanted 4 terms (8 years). Berger Senate Leader Phil Berger on constitutional session

"There are many folks who feel that if we’re going to term limit the leadership in the General Assembly, that there should be balance between the General Assembly and the governor," who can serve 8 consecutive years, he said. “I’m confident we’ll find common ground with the House, he added, “but in the last two days we were unable to do that.”

Berger also said his caucus decided not to take up the third proposed amendment changing the makeup of the State Board of Education because members wanted more time to evaluate its impact.

Minority Democrats in both chambers criticized GOP leaders this week for not taking action on job creation or hurricane relief. The committee assigned to Irene response only met for the first time this morning.

Berger said Perdue’s Irene chief Bob Etheridge told the committee his office is still assessing disaster relief needs and working on proposals.

“This is not something that we need for some folks to try to take partisan advantage on or to try to play politics with,” said Berger. “We need to make sure that we do what’s right when it’s right.” 

“The governor and I have not agreed on a whole lot of things, but I think they’re right on this,” he continued. “We need to make sure we have a good assessment of what needs to be done. I just don’t think we’re ready for that now.”

Berger also downplayed criticism from Democrats about having to return to Raleigh for a third extra session in November. Democrats said the General Assembly is turning into a full-time legislature under the GOP.

However, Berger said  the idea of a full-time legislature “is an issue that is probably ripe for discussion.”

“I don’t think we are there yet,” he quickly added. “I actually don’t think there’s support for that. But I do think it’s something that is worthy of discussion.”

8 Comments

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  • matthewwood007 Sep 16, 2011

    @marktroll The fact remain there has been a general effort to disenfranchise voters by republican state legislative bodies

    Where the information comes from makes no difference if it is factually correct. Your personality attacks make you seem silly especially in this instance when the foundations our Federal Election is being threaten by a radicalized state government

  • marktroll Sep 15, 2011

    lol @matthewwood providing a link from a hack. oh yeah ari berman is soooo impartial. lol

  • marktroll Sep 15, 2011

    we would just be finishing the long session if the dems were still in control, as history clearly shows. so the arguments on cost of session per day are completely meaningless.

  • MoniqueNC Sep 15, 2011

    “Some folks have said ‘Promises made, promises kept,’” he added.

    Correctly stated. Democrat Crawford gets his appropriations committee chair position - just as promised for his budget vote.

  • airbornegirl16 Sep 14, 2011

    Oh yeah they're taking NC in a direction alright. Too bad it's the wrong one.

  • socialjustice64 Sep 14, 2011

    @earthsister - and cost the taxpayers in excess of $150K to boot!!

  • earthsister Sep 14, 2011

    Thank goodness they're going home - they've done enough damage this week alone. :/

  • matthewwood007 Sep 14, 2011

    And next we will work on voter repression by ending early voting, implementing a voter ID...

    http://www.thenation.com/blog/163395/gop-2012-strategy-disenfranchise-democrats-rig-electoral-college