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Crist Vows to Give Lawmakers "Hell" for Abrupt End to Session

By James Call

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wfsu/local-wfsu-913907.mp3

Tallahassee, FL – The Florida House abruptly ended a special session without voting on a proposal to ban offshore drilling in state waters. James Call reports the Republican-controlled chamber executed a strategy to deliver a message to Governor Charlie Crist.

Lawmakers quickly killed the governor's request to place a proposed constitutional amendment on the November ballot. The House convened and adjourned in less than 48 minutes, which for all intents and purposes made any action by the Senate meaningless. The House's gavel and go strategy left the governor disappointed.

"How arrogant can a legislature be?"

House leaders charge the governor is trying to use the oil spill to boost his U-S Senate campaign. By failing to take up the resolution, lawmakers may have dealt the governor a defeat. However, Crist, quoting Harry Truman, indicated they also handed him a campaign issue

"And I'm going to give them hell for it. I can't believe that they would have that much of a lack of respect for the people of Florida that they wouldn't even give them the chance to vote on an issue that is impacting Florida as much as this one is. It is embarrassing to watch."

August 4th is the deadline to place a proposal on this year's ballot. It appears the Legislature will miss that deadline. House and Senate leaders say they will address economic issues related to the spill in a September special session.