Larry Teague Warns Private Option at Risk

by Andrew DeMillo, The Associated Press  on Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014 10:20 am  

Senate President Michael Lamoureux says supporters still are shy of the 27th vote to keep the private option alive.

"There's no need to wait," Carter, R-Cabot, said. "Until you vote, everything else is just puffery. ... Until you go vote, everything else is irrelevant. We just need to see where everybody's at."

The first movement could come Wednesday, when a legislative panel was expected to look at amendments to the private option law aimed at swaying opponents of the expansion. Carter has said he believes there is enough support in the House to keep the private option alive.

Lawmakers also moved forward with another key agenda item on the session. The Senate voted 32-0 to take up a measure that would give the governor the choice to not call a special election to replace former Lt. Gov. Mark Darr, who resigned Feb. 1 over ethics violations. Current law requires the governor to call a special election within 150 days of the vacancy, but lawmakers from both parties have complained about the cost of a special election just months before the November general election.

Taking up the measure requires a two-thirds vote in the House and Senate since it's not a budget bill. The House Rules Committee advanced an identical resolution regarding the special election measure.

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