Energy bill passes Oregon House as bill readings delay Legislature

By Kristena Hansen, Associated Press, via The Statesman Journal.

When the Oregon Legislature began its whirlwind 35-day session two weeks ago, Republicans employed a rarely-used tool to stall the legislative process.

The issue centers around the fact that each bill is being read aloud in its entirety before lawmakers can cast votes, a constitutional requirement usually avoided on the first day of the session by a two-thirds vote in both chambers. But without support of the Republican minority, the bills are being read in full. The GOP is pushing the tactic because it is unhappy with the policy changes being proposed by Democrats.

That became problematic Monday when that tactic prompted House lawmakers to hold a marathon floor debate for more than six hours, forcing the delay and eventual rescheduling of several committee hearings and floor votes to the following day - costing time that is already limited for this year's jam-packed short session.