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Libous: “It’s going to have to be like a very good marriage”

Posted By Jon Campbell On December 5, 2012 @ 10:10 am In Uncategorized | Comments Disabled

Some are calling it a partnership. Others, a coalition. For the head of the Senate Republican Campaign Committee, the new power-sharing agreement in the state Senate will have to be “like a very good marriage.”

[1]Sen. Thomas Libous, R-Binghamton, said he believes the new Senate Majority Coalition—30 Republicans, the five members of the Independent Democratic Conference and Brooklyn Democrat Simcha Felder—can work “very effectively.” Under the deal [2], Sens. Dean Skelos, R-Nassau County, and Jeff Klein, D-Bronx, will share equal authority over the chamber.

“In many respects, it’s going to have to be like a very good marriage where the two of them hopefully will get along most of the time,” Libous said this morning on WNBF-AM in Binghamton [3], his hometown.

Libous said a practical effect of the new coalition will be more bills hitting the Senate floor for a vote. And with that, Libous said he expects more bills to fail—a rarity in Albany.

The long-held Albany tradition of only allowing a bill to be put to a vote if there are enough votes to pass is part of the “old Senate,” Libous said.

“We don’t believe the new Senate is going to be that way,” he said. “That’s not to say that every piece of legislation will make it to the floor, but I think there will be legislation—let’s use the minimum wage as an example—that probably would have a good chance of coming to the floor, and then people will vote their conscience.”

He continued: “And that doesn’t necessarily mean it will pass or floor. We won’t know until it actually comes to the floor.”

Libous said he and others have been working to redraft the Senate rules to allow for the GOP/IDC partnership. While Klein and Skelos will alternate the title of temporary Senate president every two weeks, Libous said that title—required by the state Constitution—generally only refers to administrative tasks.

“We are working on the rules of the Senate right now so that the shared powers that you’re talking about will be between Senator Klein and Senator Skelos,” Libous said.

(Photo by William Moyer / Press & Sun-Bulletin)


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URL to article: http://polhudson.lohudblogs.com/2012/12/05/libous-its-going-to-have-to-be-like-a-very-good-marriage/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://polhudson.lohudblogs.com/files/2012/12/libous.jpg

[2] Under the deal: http://polhudson.lohudblogs.com/2012/12/04/breaking-senate-gop-independent-dems-announce-senate-partnership/

[3] WNBF-AM in Binghamton: http://wnbf.com/