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Proceedings and Debates of the 1967 Constitutional Convention
Volume 104, Volume 1, Debates 1616   View pdf image (33K)
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Delegate Gallagher, I do not want to
quibble, but I think your statement was sus-
ceptible of an interpretation you did not

MR. GALLAGHER: Are you speaking
of Cecil and Harford Counties, Mr. Presi-

THE CHAIRMAN: That was one of the
questions, yes.

would be best to say that we speak in terms
of confining oneself to the territory of one

THE CHAIRMAN : Would it be accurate
to say that what you were intending was
that in creating districts, it would not be
possible to create a district that would
combine a county or counties of the eastern
shore, other than Cecil County, with any
county or counties on the western shore? I
ask this just so there will not be any ques-
tion in the Committee on Style.

would. I am deliberately avoiding mention-
ing Smith Island for the record and I would
hope its history would take due note of that

THE CHAIRMAN: Very well. Is there
any question as to the statement of the
Committee Chairman?

If not, the Chair is not aware of any
other amendments to sections prior to sec-
tion 3.16. Are there any?

(There was no response.)

THE CHAIRMAN: Delegate Gallagher,
do you have an amendment to section 3.16?

dent, an amendment is being prepared fol-
lowing our meeting this morning in your

THE CHAIRMAN: Very well. Then we
will pass section 3.16 and come back to it.

We have now reached the point on the
debate schedule where we have under con-
sideration the minority report with respect
to section 3.17. This will be Minority Re-
port LB-2(A). The Chair recognizes Dele-
gate Gilchrist to present the Minority Re-

(At this point, First Vice-President
James Clark assumed the Chair.)


man, ladies and gentlemen: First, Mr.

Chairman, I think I might note that Mi-
nority Report LB-2(A) involves not only
section 3.17, but also sections 3.13 and 3.16,
and separate amendments are involved for
each one of them.

The point which is involved in this mi-
nority report relating to 3.17 is applicable
also to the two other sections which I have
referred to, although with a somewhat
lesser import.

The majority recommendation abolishes
the historic Maryland constitutional ma-
jority requirement in voting for the passage
of bills.

This requirement has been in the Mary-
land Constitution since Maryland has had
a Constitution, and it has required the vote
of a majority of the members of the House,
or the Senate, as the case may be, for the
passage of a bill.

The majority recommendation proposes
that a bill shall be passed by a majority
of the members present and voting. The
minority does not believe that in a Senate
of 40 people and a House of 120 people, 11
people in the Senate and 31 people in the
House should be able to pass bills of the
magnitude which the budget of Maryland
has reached at this point, so that 11 Sena-
tors and 31 Delegates could pass a billed
budget. This is not government by majority
of elected representatives. This is govern-
ment by minority. This is not only a de-
parture from the tradition of Maryland,
but this is departure from the practice in
most of the states of the United States.

It is noted in the minority report that
there are only five states which have con-
stitutional provisions which permit that
which the majority recommendation pro-

There are two tabulations of the methods
of requiring voting percentages which have
been before our Committee, one a publica-
tion by the Council on State Governments,
the other a publication of the Council of
State Legislators. The two tabulations are
a bit different but they come up with what
is basically the same.

There are twenty-six states which require
approval by a majority of members elected
in each House. There are five which re-
quire approval by a majority of the mem-
bers present in each House. There are
three which require a majority of each
House; there are three which require a ma-
jority of those present, if the number is
equal to or greater than a stipulated num-
ber of members. In two cases, two-fifths of
the entire membership, in the other case,


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Proceedings and Debates of the 1967 Constitutional Convention
Volume 104, Volume 1, Debates 1616   View pdf image (33K)
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