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Renewed threat to Stroger veto power
Senator stops blocking bill reducing override requirement

Friday, October 16, 2009
Chicago Sun-Times
by Dave McKinney

SPRINGFIELD -- A suburban lawmaker who placed a hold on legislation that would lower the threshold to override Cook County Board President Todd Stroger's veto withdrew her parliamentary maneuver Thursday morning, allowing the measure to move to the Senate.

Rep. Deborah Graham (D-Oak Park) had filed a motion Wednesday that left in question the fate of legislation -- that passed the House by a 95 to 18 vote -- that would lower the override threshold for county commissioners from a four-fifths majority to a three-fifths majority.

In the past, lawmakers have used the maneuver Graham invoked to quietly kill legislation, but Graham insisted that was not her purpose.

"My intentions weren't to put it in a deep freeze. A couple of my colleagues asked me to do a motion to reconsider so they could change their votes. I'm very much in support of the three-fifths vote for the county," she said. "I don't want to be interpreted as being a Stroger ally and playing some political game."

The move leaves Stroger with mixed results after he traveled to Springfield to personally lobby lawmakers against the change and to urge them to vote down separate legislation that would have rolled back his controversial sales-tax increase.

The bid to repeal the county's 1-percent sales-tax hike from last year fell six votes shy of the 71 needed to pass.



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