“On a bill involving such high stakes and so much money, to have anyone other than the member casting a vote is a very serious matter that should be investigated immediately by the House,” said Quinn, who said such absentee voting “doesn’t work in the federal Congress” and is “breaking the law.”“It’s a serious violation of ethical conduct,” he said.
The governor’s angry statements, about what one top House Republican characterized derisively as “Buttongate,” came after Quinn suffered a major political defeat when the House and Senate Wednesday overrode his veto of rate-hike legislation sought by Commonwealth Edison and Ameren. Quinn’s administration had made the defeat of the rate-hike package its No. 1 priority during the fall veto session, which began this week.
Shortly before the first part of the rate-hike package surfaced in the House, as many as 18 Democrats were called off the floor to attend a budget briefing. Some of those lawmakers told the Sun-Times they returned from the briefing to see their votes had been recorded, even though they personally hadn’t cast them and, in some cases, opposite of the way they wanted.
Situational ethics from the Dem "leadership" all around. Wonder how many of Barack's votes were cast that way.Rep. La Shawn Ford (D-Chicago), a rate-hike opponent who wound up having his vote cast mistakenly in favor of ComEd by a seatmate on the first of two measures, expressed frustration that the important vote was allowed to proceed when Democratic leadership knew members were off the floor.
We know he hid in the bathroom a lot. And still is apparently.
More. Trib story:
The issue arose over how many lawmakers were on the House floor during a vote on legislation designed to scale back ComEd’s profit margin and hold them more accountable for better service. Smart grid is an attempt by ComEd to modernize its grid with digital technology.The rate increase was needed, but:
In the 1980s, the controversy even surrounded paperclips.Soviet indeed. Illinois the model for the Obama administration, which doesn't even bother with a legislature these days.
The Senate used to have voting buttons that had a little wiggle room around them, enough so that a paper clip could be used to keep a button locked down on green or red while a lawmaker was away.
When some visitors from a Soviet bloc country showed up, they began to wonder about the marvels of democracy — particularly when a handful of lawmakers were in the Senate chamber but roll calls repeatedly registered nearly all 59 senators as “yes” votes.
Turned out many of the lawmakers had jammed paperclips into the voting switches next to their buttons and locked in “yes” votes for a series of non-controversial procedural motions.
Related post: Earth to Gov. Quinn from Gov. Moonbeam