Pa. police ID bill may be in store for rare veto override
In November, Republicans added even more members to their already-dominant numbers in Pennsylvania's House and Senate.
Since then, they've thrown their weight around on several priority issues. But a bill currently working its way though the Legislature could give the party an opportunity to do something much less common — override Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf.
House Bill 27 would keep local police departments from releasing names of officers involved in shootings for at least 30 days following an incident.
Despite opposition from the American Civil Liberties Union and other groups, it had bipartisan support, passing both chambers with enough votes to override a veto.
Wolf struck it down anyway, and the session ended before advocates for the legislation could respond.
But now the bill's back, and it has already passed the House by another veto-proof majority.
Republican state Rep. Martina White of Philadelphia, who sponsored the legislation, said this time, lawmakers will overrule Wolf if necessary.
"I sure hope the governor reconsiders vetoing the legislation for a second time, but I believe that there is sufficient support in the Legislature across both chambers to override any veto that should come," she said.
Wolf said his position hasn't changed.
House Democratic spokesman Bill Patton said leaders in his caucus support the governor, and would urge the bill's Democratic supporters to do the same if a veto override seems imminent.
White said that would be disingenuous.
"I don't know how you vote in favor of a bill twice in a row, to switching your vote just because the governor asked you to," she said.
Veto overrides are rare.
The most recent was in 2010, under Gov. Ed Rendell. And the one before that was more than two decades ago, when the late Bob Casey Sr. was governor.
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