On Thursday, a judge handed Bobby Jindal his second legal defeat in as many lawsuits.
State District Judge William Morvant ruled that House Speaker Chuck Kleckley took an unconstitutional shortcut in the lege process during the 2012 lege session.
The judge correctly ruled that the constitution requires a two-thirds vote to pass Bobby’s proposed “pension reform” for new state hires because it increased costs.
Kleckley, upon instructions from Jindal, unconstitutionally allowed the legislation to pass the House with a majority vote. The legislation only received 68 of the constitutionally-required 70 votes needed to pass. The Senate had already given it a 2/3’s vote.
That will not only be very costly to the taxpayers at a time when healthcare is being slashed, but will take time. Plus, there’s no guarantee that the Supremes will overrule Morvant.
The proposed new law was scheduled to go into effect on July 1.
If Bobby truly believes that his “reform” measure is worthwhile, his best option is to simply reintroduce the bill in the 2013 Regular Session and get the constitutionally-required 2/3’s vote. Surely, Bobby will have no problem securing the extra two votes in the House.
The new law could be passed before an appeal to the Supremes would be heard and well before the July 1 deadline.
From a “reform” perspective, it would be preferable for the House to simply address Kleckley’s erroneous ruling directly rather than asking the Supremes to circumvent the language of the constitution through some legal hocus-pocus.
Surprise us, Bobby, and do the right thing.