TOPEKA, Kan. (WDAF) — The Republican-controlled Kansas House of Representatives’ plan to try to override Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s vetoes has stalled.
On Wednesday, Republican House Speaker Ron Ryckman said there weren’t enough votes on either measure to override the governor’s vetoes.
Kelly vetoed a bill that would ban transgender athletes from competing in women’s sports. She also vetoed a bill that would have established a so-called “Parents Bill of Rights,” allowing parents to inspect their children’s curriculum.
On Tuesday, the Kansas Senate voted to override Kelly’s vetoes on each measure, sending the bills to the House.
When it comes to the ban on transgender women competing in women’s sports, House Republicans had 74 members vote in favor of it earlier in April.
“I’ll be honest. I don’t think it will come up tomorrow,” Republican state Rep. Barbara Wasinger told WDAF-TV Wednesday when asked when Republicans will try to override Kelly’s veto on the bill.
Republicans need a two-thirds majority to override Kelly’s veto, which is 84 members. Wasinger said the vote will not happen Friday either if lawmakers are still here.
“One of the reasons we don’t want to do it this week is we have quite a few House members not here that will be here next week, so I think it’s more likely that it will be next week,” she said.
Seven Republicans were gone the last time the House voted on this. Regardless, the House would need at least three more Republicans to flip their votes from a “no” to a “yes” next week.
“Our hope is that those same Republican representatives that willingly voted with us last year and also voted with us when this bill came onto the House floor will continue to do so, so we can make sure that we can sustain the governor’s veto and protect the trans kids across Kansas,” Democratic state Rep. Stephanie Byers said Wednesday when asked whether Republicans will be able to override Kelly’s veto.
The vote will come shortly after Republican state Rep. Cheryl Helmer publicly said she didn’t want to share the women’s restrooms at the Statehouse with a transgender colleague, which was Byers.
When it comes to overriding the Parents Bill of Rights, just 67 House members supported that bill earlier this month. That means even more Republicans will have to flip their vote from a “no” to “yes,” to get to the 84 votes needed to override Kelly there.