The Tale of Two Legislatures / by AzHHA

Today is the 123rd day of legislative session. In a surprise move, the House and Senate suspended the rules in their respective chambers to allow for late introduction of bills yesterday. Normally, this would indicate a budget vote was imminent. However, this year who knows if it means anything. It is almost as if there are two separate legislatures operating in parallel universes.

First Legislature

In one universe, there are regular budget meetings between House and Senate Republican leadership and the Governor’s office. Enough to have progressed sufficiently to justify the late introduction of bills which will contain the budget. In this universe, the minimum 16 votes in the Senate and 31 votes in the House have been secured, and the legislature is approximately a week away from adjourning sine die.

Second Legislature

At the same time, in another universe, there are strongly held positions on issues ranging from education funding to taxes, cut across party lines. Making it very hard to secure 16 and 31 votes in the Senate and House, respectively.

And here we sit, in the middle of May, with no end in sight. Will 2019 be the record-breaking year for the Arizona State Legislature?