The Virginia General Assembly convened Wednesday for the “reconvened” or “veto” session to consider Governor Terry McAuliffe’s amendments and vetoes. This past General Assembly Session, there were over 2,000 pieces of legislation submitted and deliberated by various Senate and House committees. Of those 2,000 bills, 811 were passed by the General Assembly. Governor McAuliffe signed over 700 bills, but he vetoed 32 bills and amended 57 more. He made 30 amendments to the budget passed by the General Assembly.
Many of my colleagues and I in the House were disappointed by the nature of the Governor’s vetoes. Over the last five weeks, he seemed more interested in dividing Virginians than highlighting much of the bipartisan work done this year. The Governor vetoed legislation to keep our kids safe in schools, empower parents when it comes to educational decisions, and protect coal jobs in Southwest Virginia.
In fact, the Governor vetoed six bills that passed the House with veto-proof majorities thanks to the support of Democrats. But in Richmond today, many Democrats flipped their votes to support Governor McAuliffe’s vetoes.
The House was able to override the Governor’s vetoes on two bills, but Senate Democrats voted to protect the Governor’s vetoes. The House voted to override a veto of legislation that would protect historical war monuments and memorials from being altered or destroyed at a later date. The House also voted to override the Governor’s veto of the coal tax credit.
Governor McAuliffe also made several major amendments to the General Assembly’s two-year budget. The House rejected the Governor’s effort to expand Medicaid and provide taxpayer funding for abortion through the budget.
Three bills I introduced this year, or identical legislation, were vetoed by the Governor, and we did not have enough support to override his vetoes. These were:
Click on the picture below to watch my floor speech expressing my disappointment with the Governor's veto of the Education Savings Accounts bill.
With the reconvened session complete, the General Assembly has completed its work for 2016. We will return to Richmond in January of 2017 for the next legislative session.
I am proud of what the legislature accomplished on behalf of Virginians this year. We passed a balanced state budget. The General Assembly passed a major, bipartisan agreement to secure the Second Amendment rights of law abiding citizens. We passed legislation to strengthen our economy, give more children the opportunity to succeed, and fought to advance conservative values.
I thank you for taking the time in keeping up with this year’s legislation within the General Assembly and informing me of your thoughts and opinions. I hope my emails have helped you gain a better understanding of the legislative process here in the Commonwealth and where I stand on issues.
Thank you for the privilege of serving as your elected delegate. I am working hard for you. Please let me know of any issues you would like to discuss with me, opportunities to meet with groups in your community, etc. You can reach me and my staff at (540) 751-8364 or DelDLaRock@house.virginia.gov