In latest power-grab, Speaker Egolf floats cutting off how many bills each rep. can introduce

On Monday, it was reported that Democrat New Mexico House of Representatives Speaker Brian Egolf looks to further punish the Republican minority by cutting off how many bills each state representative can propose each legislative session, while on a call to plan for the upcoming 60-day proceedings in January. 

Egolf floated “cutting back on the amount of time and staffing needed to process legislation by limiting each of the House’s 70 members to just five bills,” according to the report. 

House Republican Leader Jim Townsend chided the idea, saying it puts the “majority at quite an advantage.” 

Even far-left Democrat Sen. Daniel Ivey-Soto, who has been fierce opposition to Republican causes, raised concerns with the idea, as Egolf planned to exempt bills supported by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham from the five-bill limit.

Ivey-Soto said, “If you are going to have a limitation, do not exempt anything that the executive wants from that limitation or it allows one set of government to set the agenda for [the] other set of government.” Ivey-Soto also proposed the start date of the legislative session be pushed back, citing COVID-19. 

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), a majority of states have no limits to the number of bills a legislator can pre-file before the start of each legislative session, however, some states have limits to how many bills can be proposed after a certain day following the start of each session. Chambers in 13 states impose a limit on bill introductions.

Also noted by NCSL, “Bill limits might interfere with lawmakers’ abilities to respond to emergencies or the problems of changing times,” and “Limits also may lead to the introduction of bills that are more general in nature and scope, resulting in “Christmas tree” bills rather than ones targeted to specific problems.” 

Egolf is notorious for trying to yank as much power as possible away from the minority, and he has repeatedly broken House rules to ram through his partisan agenda, with such things as spending bills and gun bans.

To write Egolf to share your concerns about his latest proposal, he can be reached via email here: brian.egolf@nmlegis.gov. To contact your legislator, visit the “Find My Legislator” function on the NMLegis.gov website.

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