Sheep in the Statehouse

For those of you that aren’t in Massachusetts, we’ve had an interesting couple of weeks around a drunk driving bill.

The bill is called “Melanie’s Law”, named after a young girl who was killed by a drunk driver. The fun started when the Massachusetts Legislature passed an amendment to the bill which removed much of the bite. And it wasn’t even close, with the amendment passing 110-20 (or so) in the House and 32-7 in the Senate.

Things got more interesting when a number of people pointed outthat key senators were actually actively defending drunk drivers in court during the time when the bill was being debated.

As he often does, Governor Romney vetoed the bill and sent it back with revisions that restored the key pieces. In the case he had lots of help - public support was overwhelming in favor of the stronger bill and our legislator’s were taking serious heat.

So the state legislature voted again this week. This time, the same set of people who logged over 100 votes to weaken the bill, voted 138-2 to strengthen it per the Governor’s proposal. The weakness of the individuals involved to flip-flop en masse that much is mind boggling. I’m sure they all have excuses, but the numbers speak for themselves – lemmings, sheep, pick your favorite analogy.