DENVER — Republicans in the Colorado Senate who say Democratic lawmakers are moving too fast are trying to slow things down by calling for a full reading of a bill that’s more than 2,000 pages long.
Republican leaders said on Monday they requested a full reading of House Bill 19-1172 on the Senate floor. The latest version of the bill posted on the legislature’s website comes in at 2,023 pages.
While the Senate began with a typical reading by a human being, Democrats eventually brought in computers to read the bill's text at high speed.
The request for a full reading of the lengthy bill aims to slow down Senate proceedings, as Republicans complain that Democrats, who have a majority in the Senate, have not been giving ample time for debate and discussion of legislation.
Republicans say they were left with no other option since they’re not allowed to filibuster or simply walk out of the chambers.
“Our Senators have promised their constituents that they would do everything within their power to ensure their voices were heard, and as such, we will use every tool at our disposal to ensure that happens,” read a statement from Minority Leader Chris Holbert (R-Douglas County), Assistant Minority Leader John Cooke (R-Greeley), Minority Caucus Chair Vicki Marble (R-Fort Collins) and Minority Whip Ray Scott (R-Grand Junction).
Watch a live feed from the Senate floor below:
Senate President Leroy Garcia issued the following statement:
"Coloradans sent us here to work hard. We have done and will continue to do that - even if it means working nights and weekends. We will always respect the process and work within the rules, but at the end of the day, we are going to do the work people sent us here to do."
In a Twitter post, Senate Democrats called the move an "ineffective use of taxpayer dollars."
In today's "ineffective use of taxpayer dollars" news, the @ColoSenGOP requested that a 2,000 page bill (that overwhelmingly passed the House) be read *at length* on the Senate floor.— Colorado Senate Dems (@COSenDem) March 11, 2019
P.S. There are only 53 days left in the legislative session. #coleg #copolitics #obstructionism pic.twitter.com/NkdlVVrCuW