For first time, Senate overrides Rendell veto

    Pennsylvania Senate Republican leaders have pledged since February they would not vote on bills after the Nov. 2 election.Despite the promise, the Senate voted to override Gov. Ed  Rendell’s veto of an education bill Wednesday.Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi acknowledged he had vowed again and again not to convene a lame-duck session this year.But, he said, “it’s safe to say no one foresaw” the Democratic-controlled House overriding  a bill Rendell had vetoed in a post-election vote.Before the vote was held, Pileggi said the override was different than holding a lame-duck vote on a new or controversial measure.”I am asking the members to vote on precisely the same language we all considered on September 29 when we approved House Bill 101 by a unanimous vote of 47-0,” he said Wednesday. “Not a single word has changed.”Newly elected Minority Leader Jay Costa of Allegheny County said the Senate was violating what he called “a very hollow promise,” and warned the chamber was contributing to public mistrust of government.”The public view of our institution, in my opinion — and as I think we heard over the course of the last year — is at one of its lowest points in history,” said Costa. “Some of the reasons for that may be fair, and they may be unfair. But unfortunately much of it is at our own doing. Much of it is our own fault.”The chamber voted 42-7 to override the bill. Rendell has vetoed 35 bills during his tenure. This is the first time he’s been overridden.

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