How the Senate could fail to override the Governor’s veto of the magistrates bill tonight

By: - June 1, 2015 3:56 pm

It’s almost assuredly not going to happen, but if there was a way for the motion to override the Governor’s veto of Senate Bill 2 to fail tonight, here’s how it might conceivably happen:

It takes a 3/5 vote of those present to override. Assuming everyone shows up that means 30 votes are necessary to override. 21 “noes” would defeat the motion.

So, first of all, all of the Democrats would almost certainly have to vote “no.” On the original vote, two Democrats voted “yes” — Senators Ben Clark and Joel Ford. Ford has already said he’s going to switch to “no.”  If Clark would come to his senses also that’s 16 against.

Now, two Republicans courageously voted “no” originally — John Alexander and Jeff Tarte.  Assuming they stick to their guns that’s 18.

Where to find three more Republicans with a modicum of common sense?

The three most obvious candidates are:

  • Senator Tamara Barringer of Wake County, a relative newcomer who has been know to show an independent streak on occasion,
  • Senator Stan Bingham of Davidson County  — a moderate who used to vote with the Dems, is retiring and who would seem to have little that the powers-that-be could threaten,  and
  • Senator Fletcher Hartsell of Cabarrus County — another relative moderate who regularly charts an independent course and who has been in the Senate for more than a quarter-century.

If all three of these folks could somehow be persuaded to do the right thing or just not show up tonight — Hartsell missed the last vote — a failure to override is at least conceivable. Stay tuned. We’re not holding our breath, but you never know.


Our stories may be republished online or in print under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. We ask that you edit only for style or to shorten, provide proper attribution and link to our web site. Please see our republishing guidelines for use of photos and graphics.

Rob Schofield
Rob Schofield

NC Newsline Editor Rob Schofield oversees day-to-day newsroom operations, authors and voices regular commentaries, and hosts the 'News & Views' weekly radio show/podcast.