Wednesday, the Alabama House of Representatives attempted to close the day with a ten minute calendar where any bill that anyone had any objection to could be defeated if any legislator spoke against the bill for ten minutes. All of the bills place on the calendar by the Rules committee were all considered to be non-controversial with broad bipartisan support.
Under a ten minute calendar, all debate must be over and the bill passed in ten minutes time. Any single legislator who takes his ten minutes of time can kill any bill simply by speaking for ten minutes on the bill.
That was the bipartisan plan; however State Representative John Rogers, D-Birmingham, took it upon himself to kill every bill that came on the calendar. Rogers only explanation was a complaint about one of his local bills that did not get approved for the earlier special order calendar.
After Rogers killed the first several bills, State Representative Arnold Mooney, R-Indian Springs requested a point of personal privilege.
Mooney cited recent offensive remarks made by Rogers two weeks earlier during the abortion debate in a letter that he gave to the speaker and distributed to reporters.
Mooney began reading from his letter formally accusing Rogers of conduct disgracing the legislature. As Mooney read his letter of condemnation from the floor he was gaveled down by the Speaker of the House Mac McCutcheon, R-Monrovia,
“That is uncalled for,” McCutcheon said interrupting Mooney.
The House erupted.
House Majority Leader Nathanial Ledbetter, R-Rainsville, motioned that the House adjourn.
The plan had been to work until midnight; but there were two and a half hours left in the legislative day. Wednesday was the last day for the House to pass House originated bills. For the remainder of the session, the House will only consider Senate bills for the remainder of the legislative session.
Arnold Mooney is running for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate. John Rogers has expressed interest in running for U.S. Senate as well. Doug Jones currently holds that seat.