12:47 - Up in the Senate gallery now, waiting for the floor session. Talk downstairs was that most of the Reps, including many of those on Approps, went out to lunch with some lobbyists. The Dems were meeting in their caucus room, though that has broken up somewhat (saw Amanda Aguirre, Albert Hale, and Paula Aboud in the halls/elevator).
House Approps has been delayed until after the House floor session. They seem to be having many of the same problems over there that they are having here - the nihilist branch of the extremist wing of the GOP caucus is standing together (so far) in opposition to anything resembling a compromise.
12:07 - Aboud stated that the earlier absence of the Dems was not a "statement", they were just working on something and no one had told them that the meeting was finally starting.
12:03 - Paula Aboud thinks that they (meaning the Rep leadership) could go to the floor and reassign these bills to another committee, as it doesn't seem that this Republican-run committee will pass the Republican-written budget.
11:59 - Now I'm updating my Yahoo! Fantasy Baseball teams. Translation - nothing happening. I'll give it another few minutes, maybe to 12:15, before looking for something a little more active. Word around the room is that House Approps is in session to consider the tax bills.
11:45 - LD17 State Rep Ed Ableser popped in and earned some laughs when he announced that he had been appointed chair of Senate Approps. If only...
11:38 - While waiting for the Reps to dislodge their craniums from their rectal orifices (could be a looong wait for that :) ), the votes on the feeder bill -
Opposed - Harper, Gould, Steve Pierce, and Aboud.
Supported - Russell Pearce, Melvin, Gorman, Sylvia Allen
Not voting - Hale, Rios, Aguirre
11:33 - Still in recess, and nary a game of kickball in sight. Some serious arm-twisting going on right now. The Reps do not have enough support in their caucus to pass this without Democratic support, and they would rather shut down the state completely than allow the Dems to have any input.
11:27 - The Keystone Cops have recessed again (h/t to Tedski for the Keystone Cops reference).
11:25 - Harper reiterates that if he votes with the Democrats on stuff today, he's not voting with the Democrats but against changing the previously passed budget.
11:22 - Meeting back in session. Steve Pierce moved to reconsider SB1470. Hale, Rios, and Aguirre are here now.
11:15 - SB1470 fails 4 - 4, 3 not voting. And the Republican circular firing squad continues. Meeting recessed.
11:14 - Aboud here.
11:13 - SB1470 is amended to the new bill, Gould opposing.
11:11 - Gould is here. Still no Dems.
11:09 - Pearce is rambling on about overspending, overtaxed, and tea parties.
11:08 - Harper expresses the thought that the original Senate budget was the best one, partially because the Home Builders Association liked it.
11:07 - House Approps chair John Kavanagh is in the room, overseeing the proceedings.
11:04 - First up - SB1470, the feed bill. Changes SB1188. Howie Fischer of Capitol Media had to turn on a mike so that everyone could here the presentation. Pearce forgot to hit the switch.
11:03 - Gorman is here. Meeting started. No Dems.
11:01 - Steve Pierce is here, but so far no Dems (except for Aguirre's brief appearance), Pam Gorman, or Ron Gould.
10:57 - no meeting yet, but more and more staffers. BTW - as many staffers as there are here, there may be more media folks in the room (including some who actually get paid for this stuff! :) )
Sylvia Allen opines that everybody is going to be back here in August, no matter which budget is passed. I may never agree with her on anything else, but on this? Yup.
10:49 - Pearce is finally here. Still no quorum as only Harper and Melvin are in the room with him.
10:39 - More staffers present, but there aren't any Senators in the meeting room right now.
10:25 - reformatted post; no changes yet. This is getting boring.
10:23 - Amanda Aguirre has taken her seat and is talking to Al Melvin. They're the only two Senators in the room right now.
10:09 - Melvin and Harper stepped back out; Sylvia Allen holding an impromptu press conference...until she stepped out.
Meeting getting closer though - legislative staff has put out printed copies of the strikers to be considered and their associated fact sheets.
10:02 - Sylvia Allen and Al Melvin just came in. Meeting not started yet.
10:00 - the only senator who has show up so far is Jack Harper, and he just walked in and is setting up his laptop.