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Comments about ‘GOP lawmaker apologizes for HB477 vote, saying he feared retaliation’

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Published: Monday, March 14 2011 2:58 p.m. MDT

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no fit in SG
St.George, Utah

I am now even more concerned about Utah Legislators.
They are frightened of each other!

Furry1993
Somewhere in Utah, UT

Somehow, given what happened, Lockhart's comments lack veracity. Also given the circumstances, I find Powell VERY believable.

It's time to make a LOT of Republican legislators pay the price for what they tried to impose on the people of Utah.

FDRfan
Sugar City, ID

If the three Nephites ran on the Democratic ticket in Utah, they would be slaughtered.

Florwood
American Fork, UT

Rep. Powell, resign! You vote for something, then after the fact castigate it, the entire legislature, and the Republican party. You demonstrate a degree of lameness and whininess that begs for you to leave the field for more someone more qualified.

For the record, I also feel that 477 is bad legislation, but I wouldn't have voted for it. Grow a spine and focus your efforts elsewhere.

gs86js
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Re Florwood: I highly doubt that Rep. Powell is the only Republican legislator who felt pressured to vote against his constituents. So said, KUDOS to the Cottonwood Heights senator AND representative for the courage to vote in favor of your constituents and against 477. Morgan and Poulson - my hat's off to you both!

Fitness Freak
Salt Lake City, UT

Someday........I'd like to know the "backstory" of why this bill got rammed through.
Was it because lawmakers didn't want the public to know what lobbyists were "offering" for their votes on a particular topic?
Not all "perks" offered by lobbyists are of a monetary variety. Sometimes......cushy jobs magically open up at a lobbyists' company or affilliated company for when the Senators or legislators decide to retire from legislative work! Imagine that!!

I'm not naive enough to believe that legislators passed this bill simply to save the state money on "printing costs"!

Whats the REAL STORY?

jean22
Bountiful, UT

If lawmakers are exempted from having to disclose their e-mail correspondence, voice mails, text messages, instant messages and video chats, then they should not use them to conduct government business. However, that is not how communication is done these days. Now with this exemption, they will probably carry out much of their communication this way so that they are shielded from public scrutiny.

This is a bad law for Utah and I hope the furor over its fast-track passage will still be high when the time comes for them to "amend" this in a special session. They are hoping we will forget by then. We cannot let them get away with this. I hope that other lawmakers like Rep. Powell will see the error of their ways and change their minds by then so that it doesn't just sail on through because of our one-party system. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

JWB
Kaysville, UT

Those that don't believe this was fast track through the subverted legislative process just need to see the public record timeline for HB477. The Governor did his part to sign it in one day after passing, also. "Pass it and sign it and then read it." Rs Slam-dunk bill. Numbers= Yeas, Nays, Absent
2/4/2011 Bill Numbered by Title Without any Substance
2/5/2011 Numbered Bill Made Available for Public Distribution
2/5/2011 Bill Numbered by Title Without any Substance
3/1/2011 Bill Numbered but not Distributed
3/1/2011 Numbered Bill Made Available for Public Distribution
3/1/2011 House/ received bill from Legislative Research
3/1/2011 House/ 1st reading (Introduced)
3/1/2011 House/ to standing committee
3/2/2011 House Committee - Favorable Recommendation 10 0 1
3/3/2011 House/ passed 3rd reading 61 12 2
3/4/2011 Senate/ passed 2nd & 3rd readings/ suspension 21 7 1
3/4/2011 Senate/ to House
3/7/2011 Senate/ passed 2nd & 3rd readings/ suspension 23 6 0
3/7/2011 House/ concurs with Senate amendment 42 29 4
3/8/2011 Governor Signed

Pagan
Salt Lake City, UT

HB477 is a dirty bill.

Even those who voted for it can't stomach it.

JWB
Kaysville, UT

Florwood | 3:17 p.m. March 14, 2011

If you look at the voting in the House and Senate, it was basically party line. Some of the House noticed their constituent's comments and when the Senate amended HB477, some of the Republicans changed their votes. It is such a bad decision by any leadership to push this type of bill. Trust is not highly needed by the leadership, just force the other elected officials use their "read the bill after the vote" mentality. It is not just in Washington, D.C. now that Utah has set a precedent on frank and open discussion.

dogchow1
Murray, UT

I guess the polls showing peoples displeasure at passing this got to him. Maybe the next rep. from his district will have a spine.

williary
Kearns, UT

This story just more clearly illustrates the hypocrisy of Utah politicians/voters.

A Republicans comes out and claims he was pressured by his party to vote for an unpopular bill. There are then 6 whole comments about it. The typical stallwort commentators from the Republican/Tea Party making up zero of those.

Yet recall the situation with Jim Mattheson and his "forced" vote for the Health Care Bill in committee. He was torched alive on these boards by Utah Republicans. Those who are missing today.

Some things just never change.

Florien Wineriter
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I believe this form of legislating result when ever one party completly controls all branches of government. The longer one party keeps such complete overwhelming control the worse governing we will get! When the republicans legislatively redistrict the state we probably will not have either a democracy or a republic we may end up with a theocracy.

Instereo
Eureka, UT

Well Rep. Powell, you can fear the leadership or you can fear the people, take your choice. You were voted in to represent the people and to do what's best for them. Of course, they may not remember this vote so you don't really have to worry about your next elections because you'll get the peoples vote with the leadership's help and money.

Laser
Iowa City, IA

Wow a politician goes to the airwaves with his side of the story...I'm not sure he's being honest.

He should be voted out for a representative who will vote his or her conscience.

The act in question is fine except for the idea that it's not the governments responsibility to make public records public. Oh, yes it is!

Carson
Provo, UT

Will you people wake up and stop voting these people in office just because they belong to the same church as you do!

David
Centerville, UT

What kind of message can be sent to Republicans so that this type of legislating doesn't happen again? Vote them out...those that voted for HB477. Then vote out our governor.

Norm
Salt Lake City, UT

This really dosen't surprise me. It is the same with illegal immigration. We have a group controlling our state and do what they want. Watch they will be relected. I hope not I will help anyone running against them and I am a Republican but not a follower or give into any religious group for guidance.
With the new immigration bill what is to stop Mexican or any country immigrants that want to come to the USA,they can save money to pay the required bribe to get a work permit. They then can bring in all of the relatives they want to gain the benefits we so freely give. I talk to many people and they are all against the immigration bill as well as now they can hide behind the new secret law, so much for transparnecy. I have no idea how they get the polls to agree with what they do. I have found very few that do agree with them. They must have a list of followers they call, who knows.
Very frustrated with the state legislators and what they are jamming down our throats. Time will tell.

David B.
Cedar City, UT

You Republicans better start growing a pair PDQ or your going to lose your jobs come election time!There is still a very strong anti-incumbent attitude. So be careful how you tread on us.

Bebyebe
UUU, UT

I hope the good people of Heber City remember they elected a man who is afraid to stand up to his own party. If he won't stand up to them will he stand up for you?

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