50-State Government Relations Commentary and Insight

More on Supermajorities and States with One Party Control

By: Jeff Hartgen, MultiState Principal
November 13, 2012

Folllowing last week’s election, there have been an increasing number of legislative chambers in which one party has a “supermajority”.  The importance of this, especially when both chambers and the governor’s office are all of the same party cannot be underestimated.  It takes even more power away from the minority party on a range of issues, such as taxes, or collective bargaining or any other controversial issue.   It might even mean the ability to have a quorum without anyone from the other party in attendance.   In those supermajority one party states, the dynamics will be less about the two parties, but more about factions within the supermajority party.

Below is a list of the states with some level of supermajority status.  Please note that there are still votes being counted in Ohio and California which might change the make-up of what states constitute a supermajority.  In the Georgia House of Representatives, there is one Independent who has not decided whether or not to caucus with the Republican majority, which would make that a supermajority.  Accordingly, this list will be updated as necessary.

States with Democratic Supermajorities in both houses, and a Democratic Governor:
California
Hawaii
Massachusetts

States with Democratic Supermajorities in both houses, and an Independent Governor:
Rhode Island

States with Democratic Supermajorities in one house, and a Democratic Governor:
Illinois (3/5s)
New York (House)
West Virginia (Senate)
Vermont (Senate)

States with Republican Supermajorities in both houses and a Republican Governor:
Idaho
Indiana
Kansas
North Carolina (3/5s)
North Dakota
Ohio (3/5s for most measures; pending two vote counts in the House)
Oklahoma
South Dakota
Tennessee
Utah
Wyoming

States with Republican Supermajorities in one house and a Republican Governor:
Alabama
Georgia [NOTE:  The Georgia House has 119 Republicans, 60 Democrats and one Independent who has not yet decided whether to caucus with the Republicans.  As of yesterday that representative has not decided.]
Michigan
Ohio
Virginia

States with Republican Supermajorities in both houses and a Democratic Governor:
Missouri

Please contact Jeff Hartgen at jhartgen@multistate.com or 703.684.1110 if you have any questions regarding the content of this post.

 

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