Governor Vetoes HB11. A Bill He Asked For!
The campaign to marginalize Utah Democrats (who get approximately 37% of the legislative vote but only 21% of the seats) took a strange turn last week. Governor Herbert vetoed his own bill! I THINK I KNOW WHY!
In 2016, Herbert signed a bill removing Democrats from historic equal representation on the Legislative Audit Committee. The result of that bill is that the GOP alone can decide what gets audited in state government. They also passed another bill changing all precedent in making the dozens of bipartisan legislative staff ultimately report to the GOP leadership.
This year, the rolling of Democrats continued with HB 11. BREAK Representative Thurston and Senator Dayton, both of Provo, carried the bill that allowed the Governor to drop all laws requiring political balance in important state boards and commissions. Herbert could have picked ALL Republicans on such important Committees and Commissions as the DABC, Air Quality and the PSC. The bill passed without a single Democratic vote. Putin would have been proud. No opposing views in government.
Then, shockingly, Governor Herbert vetoed HIS OWN BILL, written the exact way he had proposed the bill.
Perhaps Herbert decided this bill could wait until next year. Like a basketball ref who blows a call--and later in the game does a ‘make-good’-- perhaps Herbert thought he could score some brownie points with the state’s non-LDS who were adamantly, and in huge numbers, opposed to his signing of the .05 DUI. Rep Thurston was author of both bills.
Maybe there are other explanations for the veto--but none make sense to me.