Gun Nullification Bill Doesn’t Make It
May 17, 2014

(AP) — Missouri’s Legislature failed to advance highly publicized legislation that sought to nullify some federal gun laws as its session concluded Friday, but it did send the governor a measure that could allow specially trained teachers to carry concealed weapons in the classroom.

Despite being a top priority that majority GOP leaders pledged would be one of the first bills passed this year, a dispute among Republicans ultimately derailed the attempt to void any federal law that “infringed on people’s right to keep and bear arms.”

Supporters were divided until the closing hours of session over how aggressive the measure should be in punishing federal agents who enforced unspecified gun laws. House sponsor Rep. Doug Funderburk, R-St. Peters, said it was difficult to come to a compromise that protected gun rights while easing the concerns of law enforcement groups.

“The problem is how to deal with a very fine line of language that isn’t overprotection but still has elements to keep our community safe,” he said.

The House adopted the final compromise and sent it to the Senate with less than 30 minutes remaining in the session. Democratic senators were able to stall for a vote for the remaining time.

Missouri Lawmakers Reach Final Day, adjournment set for 6 Tonight
May 16, 2014

(AP) – Missouri lawmakers are beginning their final day of work with many of their top priorities already accomplished and with little chance of success on several other high-profile items.

The Missouri Constitution sets a 6 p.m. Friday deadline to pass legislation.

Still pending on the final day are bills authorizing a bond issuance for public buildings and attempting to nullify certain federal gun-control laws.

But lawmakers already have enacted an income tax cut and passed complex measures overhauling the state’s laws on criminal penalties and unaccredited school districts. The Republican-led Legislature also has already voted to place a transportation sales tax on the ballot and lengthen Missouri’s abortion waiting period.

Some Democratic priorities already have been written off, including a Medicaid expansion and the restoration of campaign contribution limits.

Missouri Passes 72-Hour Abortion Waiting Period Measure
May 15, 2014

(AP) – Missouri lawmakers have given final approval to legislation that would require a woman to wait 72 hours after first seeing a doctor before having an abortion.

The House voted 111-39 in favor of the bill Wednesday. The Senate approved it previously.

The bill would triple the state’s current one-day waiting period and make Missouri the third state to require a three-day wait, joining Utah and South Dakota.

It now goes to Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon, who said he would act as he has on other abortion legislation. Nixon previously allowed abortion restrictions to become law without his signature.

Supporters say the extended waiting period gives a woman more time to think about the possible consequences of an abortion. Opponents say delaying the procedure increases the risks.

Missouri Passes ‘ Border War’ Cease-Fire Measure, Awaits Kansas Decision
May 15, 2014

(AP) – Missouri lawmakers have passed legislation proposing a truce with Kansas in the intense tax-break battle for businesses in the Kansas City area.

The two states have together waived hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenues in recent years by offering specialized incentives for businesses to relocate, sometimes only a few miles across the state border.

The Missouri bill passed early Thursday morning would prohibit incentives for border-jumping businesses in an eight-county Kansas City region that spans both states.

The House voted 144-3 in favor of the measure, which the Senate passed in February. It now heads to Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon’s desk. If signed, it would take effect only if the Kansas Legislature or governor enacts a similar measure within the next two years.

Legislature Sends Nixon 2016 Presidential Primary Bill
May 6, 2014

(AP) – Missouri would hold presidential primary elections in March instead of February under a bill on its way to Gov. Jay Nixon.

House members approved the legislation Monday on a vote of 101-47. The Senate passed it 25-7 in April.

The legislation comes after Missouri had a confusing 2012 presidential election process. State law called for a February primary, but the national political parties sought to discourage most states from voting that early.

Missouri Republicans decided to disregard the primary results and use later caucuses to determine which candidate delegates would support at the Republican National Convention.

Under this year’s bill, Missouri’s next presidential primary would take place March 15, 2016.

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