MOHELA Spending Bill Dies in House
If the sale goes through, lawmakers wanted MOHELA money to pay for construction on college campuses.
Earlier Friday, Republican Rep. Carl Bearden of St. Charles said he would block the MOHELA bill unless the House passed his bill to limit state funding for colleges and to increase student scholarships.
"It allows for increases to higher education institutions," explained Bearden, "but it also focuses on the students. For a four-year institution to oppose this bill and be against student funding, is wrong, wrong."
Democrats said Bearden's bill had no place in the MOHELA debate.
"We're elected to come up here and make decisions independently on an individual piece of legislation," said Columbia Democratic Rep. Jeff Harris, "and it should rise or fail on its own, as opposed to holding one bill hostage until another bill passes."
Bearden led the way Friday morning when House Republicans stopped debate, cleared the floor and shut the door. Then, they blocked windows with black paper so no one could see into the room. The last-minute meeting let them re-group before the MOHELA battle.
After more than an hour, Republicans returned to the floor. Then, the House passed Bearden's bill and sent it to the Senate.