They were burning the midnight oil at the statehouse last night. Senators debated the livestock bill into the wee hours. Democrat Matt McCoy of Des Moines said no one really knew the full scope of what they were voting on and he called the situation “surreal.” He said it was wrong to rush through the legislation, as senators got their first look at the detailed bill draft just hours before this morning’s vote. He said he would flip a coin to determine his vote.The bill passed 37-to-13 at 4:20 this morning. McCoy ended up voting yes. Republican Senator Steve King of Kiron was one of the “no” votes. He said the bill was a political solution, but not the right solution for the problem. He says the bill will put some smaller producers out of business. He says he would “Rather do the wrong thing for the right reason, than do the right thing for the wrong reason.”The House will take up the issue today, in what could be the final day of the 2002 Iowa legislative session. Lawmakers have to finalize details on the state’s budget as well, so they’ll probably be debating past the midnight hour tonight, too.
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