The Memorial Session
By Matt Grubs, NMiF Producer
If you’ve been following us on Twitter you’ve noticed we’re fans of House Memorial 69, the title of which is “The Memorial Session”. Already you can guess something is afoot. The bill’s sponsor, Representative Don Bratton, R-Hobbs, has had enough of memorials. Legislatively, these are measures that reflect the intent of the body to do something, but don’t necessarily carry the force of law. Often, they are used to express gratitude for service – like Senate Memorial 85 which honors retiring Speaker Ben Lujan, D-Nambe.
Representative Bratton feels things have gotten out of hand with respect to most memorials (there are some 160 offered this year between the House and Senate) and so drafted HM 69. The measure requests the session to be dubbed “The Memorial Session” and that any session thereafter eclipsing the number of memorials offered this session be titled sequentially, like “Jaws” films.
But Rep. Bratton is serious about the cost – both in terms of money and legislative time – of memorial proliferation.
Rep. Bratton says memorials should be limited in their use. Every printing, every committee referral, even in the digital age, Bratton says it’s wasteful. He notes each body of the legislature can easily proclaim something and then get back to business.
Where this gets a bit more interesting is in situations like the memorials passed by each body this session objecting to the campaign finance decision in the U.S . Supreme Court’s Citizens United opinion. We asked Rep. Bratton if he feels those kinds of memorials are valid. He doesn’t. Then we tried a joke. As you’ll see, Bratton is serious about his ironic memorial. Or maybe it wasn’t much of joke.
Tags: Citizens United, Don Bratton, House Memorials