Despite little debate on magistrate bill veto override, Dem and GOP leaders call it fair

RALEIGH — Leaders of both parties say that even though no debate was allowed, when the veto override of Senate Bill 2 came to the House floor today the process was fair.

“As we know, this matter has been parked in the veto garage for a while. The manner in which we now bring it to the floor, I would not call it ambush legislation,” said House Minority Leader Rep. Larry Hall (D-Durham).  “But certainly, the rules provide we do it this way.”

The veto override vote remained on the House calendar for more than a week while House leaders waited for the right combination of members to be present to override the veto. GOP leaders said that plenty of debate had occurred on the bill, which originally passed the House 67-43 on May 28.

By rule, when Rep. David Lewis (R-Harnett) called the question, Hall and Majority Leader Rep. Mike Hager (R-Rutherford) were allowed three minutes to speak. Hall used most of his time, while Hager declined to speak.

The override passed 69-41 and the bill is now law.