Front Cover
 About the Compiler
 About the Illustrator
 Back Cover

Title: Language and lore of lawmaking in Florida
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00053720/00001
 Material Information
Title: Language and lore of lawmaking in Florida
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Creator: Morris, Allen Covington
Easley, Betty ( Illustrator )
Publisher: Office of the Clerk, House of Representatives
Publication Date: 1979
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Bibliographic ID: UF00053720
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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Resource Identifier: oclc - 05917566

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front page i
        Front page ii
        Front page iii
        Front page iv
        Front page v
        Front page vi
    About the Compiler
        Front page vii
    About the Illustrator
        Front page viii
        Front page ix
        Front page x
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    Back Cover
        Page 142
Full Text

The Language and Lore

of Lawmaking in Florida

by Allen Morris

Friendly Question
Illustrations by Betty Easley

The Language and Lore of
Lawmaking in Florida

Compiled by
Allen Morris
for the
Information and Entertainment
of the
Members of the
House of Representatives

Illustrations by Representative Betty Easley

Photographs from Florida Photographic Archives,
Strozier Library, Florida State University

November, 1979


I have written this because I believe a
legislative house needs a heritage, as does an
athletic team or a symphony orchestra.

The dictionary defines heritage as
birthright, that which is passed on from
generation to generation. The Florida House
has a fresh beginning every two years but the
real beginning stretches back to 1822 when a
storm-tossed, yellow fever-plagued group
enacted Florida's first laws.

If the 1909 House or the 1921 House or
the 1931 House come to mind, we think of a
faceless institution but, as these anecdotes
disclose, past Houses were composed of people
just as is today's House. But until now,
there was no account of the past. The House
has little if any institutional memory, in
part because a third of its membership turns
over with each new House.

The House, by resolution, directed me
to put together a formal history of the
Florida Legislature. While I have been
collecting material for 13 years, it had been
my intention to write the history as
Clerk-emeritus. It still is, but I have felt
it prudent to put some of the raw material on
paper now.

I hope you, the membership of the House,
will find the collection both informative and
entertaining. You will join me, I am sure, in
expressing gratitude to Representative Betty
Easley for the delightful cartoons which give
sparkle and humor to this book.

It has been my privilege to observe
Houses since 1941. As I have said from time
to time, I have felt at home in the House
since the evening prior to the convening of
the 1941 Session. I have treasured the
friendship of Members and hope that I shall
have that opportunity for sessions into the
years ahead.

dC0* ^^~y


Allen Morris has
served each of the
three branches of
the State
He has served
since 1947 as
Consultant on Rules
and Procedure to the
House of
Representatives and,
since July 1, 1966,
has been Clerk of
the House* The Clerk, as Political Editor of The
He was among the Mia Heraldin 11.
founding members of
The Judicial
Council, and helped
bring about adoption by the Legislature and
the electorate of that portion of Article V of
the 1885 Constitution, which related to the
Supreme Court and established the District
Courts of Appeal.
In the Executive Department, he was Vice
Chairman of the State Advertising Commission,
Secretary of the Industrial Development
Council, and Secretary of the Council on
Economic Development, all predecessors of the
present Department of Commerce.
He also served a number of terms as a
member of the State Library Board and
continues to serve on its successor, The State
Library Advisory Council. He received
Outstanding Citizen awards from the Florida
Library Association in 1974 and 1976. He was
President of the Legislative Correspondents
Association in 1947, and was awarded the
Florida State Junior Chamber of Commerce Good

Citizenship Plaque in 1949. In the
bicentennial year, he received The Florida
Patriots Medal. The House of Representatives
in 1977 named its main committee room "Morris
In an unprecedented joint session of the
Florida Legislature, attended also by the
Governor, Cabinet members, Justices of the
Supreme Court, and other dignitaries, Florida
State University in 1973 awarded Morris the
degree of Doctor of Humane Letters. The
honorary degree cited his contributions "to a
sense of state pride" through his efforts as a
journalist, historian, founder of the State
Photographic Archives, and biennial compiler
of The Florida Handbook. His hobby: reading
Journals of past sessions of the Florida


There's a saying that goes .

In order for a woman to succeed she must

Work like a dog

Think like a man

and act like a lady.

That fits Florida's Betty Easley.
She has achieved rare attention in the
House through a combination of intelligence
and pixie charm, sharp verbal elbows, quick
wit, tenacity, and the ability to get herself
into photogenic situations.
Although a member of the minority party,
Representative Easley has demonstrated

such ability and
political moxie as
to cause the House
leadership to
appoint her to two
Appropriations and
Finance and Taxation
(along with Criminal
Justice) at the
1979-1980 Sessions.
Before becoming a
Member in November,
1972, she had been a
newspaper columnist,
medical illustrator
at Walter Reed
Medical Center,
medical secretary,
legal secretary,
accountant, and the
owner of a
bookkeeping and
accounting service.
She was born in Victoria, Texas. She
attended the University of Texas, where she
was an Alpha Delta Pi. She came to Florida in
1957. Her husband is Kenneth E. Easley, a
Clearwater attorney. Mrs. Easley has four
daughters and two grandchildren.


ACT After a bill has been passed by both legislative
houses, it becomes an Act.

ACTS, GENERAL AND SPECIAL Separate hardbound
compilations of the general and special acts are
available from the Law Book Distribution Office,
Joint Legislative Management Committee, The
Capitol, Tallahassee 32304, following each
regular session. The price depends upon the size.
See Statutes.

AD HOC COMMITTEE These are committees appointed by a
Speaker or Chairman for some special purpose. The
committee automatically dissolves upon the
completion of this specified task.

ADJOURNMENT A legislative house either ends its
business day by adjourning until a stated time on
another day or until the time fixed by its rules
for reconvening. Constitutionally, neither house
may adjourn for longer than 72 hours without the
consent of the other but this mandate is often
ignored. Sine die adjournment is the final action
of a legislative session.

ADOPTED Resolutions are "adopted," bills are
"passed." There is a difference. Adopt means to
consent to or accept; pass means to enact by the
requisite number of votes. In the Florida
Legislature, resolutions (except joint
resolutions) usually are adopted by a voice vote
but bills are passed by the votes of a majority of
the members present.

ADVERTISING The Florida Constitution, in Section 10
of Article III, mandates that no special law shall
be passed unless notice of intention to seek

enactment has been published. This publication,
by law, must be done one time at least 30 days
before introduction of the bill. The publication
should state in terms adequate to put the public
on notice what is intended but not so specifically
that an amendment would flaw the notice. The
newspaper provides a notarized statement of the
fact of publication of this notice. This is known
as "proof of publication." The fact of
publication must be recited in the Journal of each
house at the time of introduction. It is not
necessary to advertise local bills whose
effectiveness is conditioned upon acceptance by
the affected public in a referendum. See Laws,

ADVISE AND CONSENT See Confirmation.


AMENDMENT Changes in any bill (or other proposed
legislation) may be offered either by a committee
or an individual legislator in the form of an
amendment to a specific portion of the pending
measure. When offered at the time of floor
consideration of the measure, the text of the
amendment is printed in the Journal, even if the
amendment is rejected by the membership.

Constitutional amendment.

SCommittee amendments are
offered ahead of any other
(except technical
amendments) and usually are
Adopted without debate since
the acceptance of these was
a condition of the committee
Shaving reported the bill

the language of a compromise bill, a conference
committee may propose amendments of its own
origin. These amendments constitute a part of the
report of a conference committee and are adopted
en bloc with the acceptance of the report. A
conference committee report is accepted or
rejected as a package, without the bodies having
the right to modify any part.

AMENDMENTS, FLOOR Amendments offered by legislators
in their individual capacity are known as "floor

AMENDMENTS, TECHNICAL In the House, the staff of the
Drafting Service reviews all bills on the Special
Order Calendar and prepares amendments to cure
errors of a technical nature -- spelling, section
and subsection numbering, and the like. Drafted
on forms of a distinctive nature, these are
offered in the name of the Committee on Rules and
Calendar and adopted pro forma by the House.

APPEAL A legislator may challenge any ruling of the
presiding officer by appealing to the body to
override this decision. This is infrequently done
and never successfully in the Florida House, so
deeply rooted is the belief in upholding the
institution of the Chair. This tradition imposes
a duty upon the Chair to be abundantly fair.

APPLE, ONE BITE OF This phrase has replaced the
"foot in the door" as a debate warning against
passing a bill to establish a program which
opponents fear will grow. An obvious allusion to
Adam's bite of Eve's apple.

APPORTIONMENT The legislative act, performed every
10th year following a Federal census, of drawing
district boundaries so as to provide
representation for the people in the Senate and
House of Representatives. This is a most
agonizing process, for it will affect in some
degree the constituency of each legislator. See
Representation of the people.

APPROPRIATIONS BILL This is a bill authorizing the
spending of public money. See General
Appropriations Bill.

ASHLER'S LAW "Even in this homogeneous society, the
cream still rises to the top." Representative
Philip F. Ashler.

[Philip F. Ashler, Pensacola, House 1963-1968,
Treasurer 1975-1976.]

ATTACHE Attache once was the word used to describe
nearly all employees of the Legislature. The word
has, however, fallen into disuse, likely because
legislative workers now can be categorized in more
specific and generally understood terms:
secretary, aide, typist, etc. As late as the
1940s, the House and Senate elected their Chamber
employees, from Assistant Chief Clerk (as the
position then was known) of the House or Assistant
Secretary of the Senate to reading clerks, other
clerks, doorkeepers, janitors, to page. The oath
of faithful performance was administered by a
Justice of the Supreme Court to the array.
Aspirants for one of the eight places as page in
the House worked the members for votes, even to
the handing out of cards. Fuller Warren,
afterwards Member of the House and Governor, was
among the disappointed page candidates at a
session in the early 1920s. The Senate also
employed some attaches by the individual Senators
drawing the positions. See Chaplain.

[Fuller Warren, Blountstown, Jacksonville, House
1927 Calhoun County, 1939 Duval County, Governor

AUDITOR GENERAL The Constitution, in Article III,
Section 2, says, "The Legislature shall appoint
an auditor to serve at its pleasure who shall
audit public records and perform related duties as
prescribed by law or concurrent resolution." This
auditor, known as the Auditor General, in 1967
superseded the State Auditor, who was an officer
of the Executive Department.


BABES IN THE WOODS Much of the drama -- or melodrama
-- in the Legislature was lost when the lawmakers
no longer had the responsibility for electing


f *1 -.

FSU Libry
Here are the Babes in the Woods, the members of the 1891 Senate who crossed into
Georgia to escape the roundup by the Sergeant at Arms to assemble a quorum for the
election of a United States Senator.

United States Senators. United States Senator
Wilkinson Call figured in two of the most
tumultuous of these elections. Newspaper accounts
of the day speak of the display of pistols on both
occasions. On one, some Senators [fifteen show in
a photograph] earned the enduring label of "Babes
in the Woods" by hiding out in the hope of
preventing a legal quorum from meeting in the
Capitol. A number fled into Georgia to escape the
dragnet of the Sergeant at Arms. The "Babes" took
to the woods after eighty-five ballots over seven
weeks saw Senator Call still leading but unable to
obtain the majority of the votes in both
legislative houses then thought necessary to his
reelection. On May 26, 1891, the fifteen State
Senators present and a majority of the House of
Representatives reelected him. The Governor
thought otherwise, appointed someone else, but the
U. S. Senate judged for itself and seated Call. A
lasting piece of political invective came out of
that campaign. Call's chief foe, William D.

Chipley, had issued a pamphlet reviewing Call's
senatorial record. Call, replying, declared:
". this pamphlet from the first sentence in it
to the last word in it is a falsehood; that it
does not contain one syllable or one word of
truth; that even its commas and periods and semi-
colons and question marks speak a falsehood."
There were a dozen politicoes mentioned as willing
to take Senator Call's seat when the 1897
Legislature convened. Representative John P. Wall
summarized the situation thus: "The people round
here in Tallahassee are afraid to shoot a beef
lest the bullet go astray and kill a senatorial
aspirant." The balloting in 1897 commenced on
April 22 and by May 2 the fact that tempers were
wearing thin may be judged from this paragraph in
a Tampa Tribune account: "Senator Bailey gained
recognition of the President, and made a
characteristic speech in which he denied in a most
dramatic manner that he had been improperly
approached on behalf of Judge Raney as reported by
Representative Crumpton. The Senator exhibited a
big gun, some thought in a friendly manner, to
back his judgment." On the twenty-fifth ballot
and in the twenty-second joint session, the
Legislature elected a man whose name had not
appeared in any of the listings of possibilities
-- Stephen R. Mallory, the namesake son of the
Floridian who quit the U. S. Senate as the state
withdrew from the Union in 1861. There were some
mutterings about Florida having been served by
only one Senator during these contests, since the
Congress then reorganized on March 4 while the
Legislature commenced its biennial sessions in
April and in the two Call contests did not elect
the Senator until the latter part of May. The
Tampa Tribune reprinted with approval a Florida
Times-Union editorial which, in part, said: "A
man who is not willing to go to Tallahassee in
February should not be elected to the Legislature.
It is folly to pretend that the February climate
of Tallahassee is so bad as to endanger life."

[William D. Chipley, Pensacola, Senate 1895-1897.
John P. Wall, Putnam County, House 1893-1897,
1901-1905, Senate 1912-1913. Edward B. Bailey,
Monticello, Senate 1889, 1895-1897, 1903-1905,
House 1921. George Pettus Raney, Franklin County,
House 1868-1870, Leon County 1899-1901, Attorney
General 1877-1885, Supreme Court Justice 1885-
1894, Senate 1903-1905. H. A. H. Crumpton, Levy

County, House 1897. Stephen Russell Mallory,
Pensacola, House 1877, Senate 1881-1887, U. S.
House 1891-1895, U. S. Senate 1897-1907.]

BAR As recently as 1949 there was reference in the
Rules of the Florida House to the "Bar" of the
House. Until the House occupied a new Chamber in
1939 (and the Senate in 1949), spectators could be
seated on the main floor of the Chamber. Seating
for those spectators was separated by a railing
from the area occupied by the Representatives. In
the House this railing was known as the "Bar."
The "Bar" doubtless derived from the same word
used to describe the railing in courtrooms to
separate the general public from the area occupied
by the judges, lawyers, jury and attaches in the
trial of a cause. The word in its judicial and
parliamentary use is hundreds of years old. The
proximity of the back row of Senators to the
spectators, including lobbyists, served to
diminish the effectiveness of the railing as a bar
to mingling. One aged Senator had a wife some
years younger. As related by J. Kenneth
Ballinger, then Political Editor of the Miami
Herald, she would sit behind her husband, the rail
between them, and would indicate how he should
vote by tapping his right shoulder for "aye" and
his left shoulder for "nay." Veteran observers
tell of the time that LeRoy "Chubby" Allen,
representing the then Seaboard Air Line Railroad,
had crossed the rail in 1931 and seated himself in
the vacant Hillsborough chair of Senate President
Patrick C. Whitaker. Whitaker, on the rostrum,
was referring bills to committee. A bill in which
Allen was interested was read by title. Whitaker
seemed to hesitate, as though trying to make up
his mind to which committee the bill should be
referred. Allen looked about for a friendly
Senator to suggest reference to the Committee on
Public Utilities, a committee loaded with members
sympathetic to the railroad interest. In his
anxiety, Allen said the words out loud: "Public
Utilities." The President heard him and, without
a glimmer of a smile, announced: "On the motion
of the Senator from Hillsborough, the bill is
referred to the Committee on Public Utilities."
See Behind the rail.

[J. Kenneth Ballinger, Tallahassee, House 1953-
1956. Patrick C. Whitaker, Tampa, House 1925,
Senate 1927-1933, President 1931, 1939-1941.]

BEHIND THE RAIL In the Senate, going "behind the
rail" was considered as being outside the Senate
Chamber, so Senators seeking to avoid voting but
not wanting to be absent from the session would
stand behind the rail and remain silent when their
name was called, even though they were present and

BICAMERAL A legislature with two houses, in Florida
a Senate and a House of Representatives. Only
Nebraska has a unicameral, or one house,

BILL A bill is a proposed law. Any legislator, all
standing committees, and some select committees
may introduce bills.

BILL HISTORY The Legislative Information Division
produces, by computer, a daily history showing the
status and prior actions on all legislation of a
regular session. Following the session, the
Division publishes a complete history of each bill
or resolution, including the action taken by the
Governor and the chapter number assigned by the
Department of State in the appropriate instances.

BILL, PREFILED See Prefiling.

form bills.

'"y Noncontroversial bills.

BirdDogging BIRD DOGGING A legislator or
lobbyist intent upon the

passage or defeat of a bill will devote himself to
following it closely through the process, in
committees and in the other house. This is known
as "bird dogging" a bill.

BIRDS, THAT'S FOR THE If a House Member had said
"That's for the birds!" during the 1919 Session,
he would not have been belittling a colleague's
arguments on a bill. The problem was explained in
a resolution introduced by Representative Eli
Futch, which said: "A species of birds known as
English sparrows has infested the hall of the
House of Representatives with nesting, littering
and noise. Such birds are interfering with the
dignity of the House in the conduct of its
business. The janitor shall be instructed to take
such steps as will cause all winged birds that
have taken the House as an abode and breeding
place to seek such elsewhere." The resolution
failed of adoption.

[Eli Futch, Gainesville, House 1918-1919.]

Representative Betty
Easley puts the meaning )
of this thus: "You're (p/ 4
gonna hear about this "
vote when you get home."
To do an unpalatable but
necessary thing.
Derived from the days
when battlefield surgery
was performed without
painkiller and the
soldier literally bit a
bullet to muffle outcry.

[Mrs. Betty Easley,
Clearwater, House 1972- Bite the Bullet
19 .]

BLACK LEGISLATORS Joe Lang Kershaw, a Democrat and,
when elected, a 57-year-old civics teacher at a
Coral Gables junior high school, became in 1968.
the first black since 1889 to serve in the

Legislature. Dade County voters sent Kershaw to
the House of Representatives, where, some 30 years
earlier as a student at Florida A&M University and
part-time Capitol janitor, he had stood on the
Speaker's rostrum and pretended he was addressing
the House. The first black woman ever to serve in
the Florida Legislature, Mrs. Gwen Sawyer Cherry,
was elected to the House from Dade County in 1970.
She was born in Miami in 1923. A lawyer, teacher
and author, she received her law degree, cum
laude, from Florida A&M University in 1965.
Representative Cherry was killed in a one-car
automobile accident at Tallahassee on February 7,

BLOOD OATH This was said to have been the nature of
the oath taken by anti-reapportionment Senators in
1955 at the Raeburn Home fish camp on the Wacissa
River at Nutall Rise. This camp gained
considerable notoriety in the Pork Chop days as
the place where Senate Presidents were selected
and legislation was passed or defeated long before
the bills were considered in
the Senate. Raeburn Horne
had been a House Member, a
Senator, and, at the time of
Nutall Rise as a center of
power, was a small loan

[Raeburn C. Home, Madison,
House 1931, 1947-1948,
Senate 1939-1941.]

1947 Session until the 1973
Session, a lobbyist in the
public interest known
popularly in her sunset
years as "The Bloomer Girl"
received considerable
attention as she moved about
the legislative halls during
sessions. She was Mrs. Nell
Foster Rogers, who resided
near Gainesville. Before
FSU Library
The Bloomer Girl, a legislative institution she retired, both the House
for sixteen sessions. of Representatives and the


Senate had honored her by the adoption of
resolutions of commendation for her unpaid
energies. She favored knickers, a corduroy shirt,
lisle hose, and a broad-brimmed straw hat. There
was a general belief, perhaps because of the
knickers, that she pedaled a bicycle between
Gainesville and Tallahassee but, in a Florida
Times-Union interview in 1971, Mrs. Rogers said,
"Where that idea came from, I don't know." She
acquainted legislators with her ideas on
legislation, expressed single-spaced, on legal-
size paper with scant margins, and in elite type.
Her first campaign was against the inoculation of
dogs for rabies. She believed the inoculations
spread the disease. A stout advocate of the
rights of the individual, Mrs. Rogers on one
occasion fought a bill to require servants to
present a health certificate to a prospective
employer. She recalled an instance when someone
had died of a penicillin injection. Mrs. Rogers
shrewdly composed an amendment which would have
enlarged the bill to require the prospective
employer similarly to have a health certificate to
show to the servant. The committee guffawed,
adopted the amendment, and killed the bill. She
fought urban renewal legislation, contending this
dislodged the poor from their homes. She often
could be seen in legislative lobbies reading bills
with the aid, because of failing eyesight, of
double magnifying glasses.

BLUE CHICKEN The designation among Pork Chop days in
the Florida Senate for a friend -- fellow Senator,
lobbyist, or other -- who stayed with you through
thick and thin. No Pork Chopper, Governor LeRoy
Collins also used the phrase, once inscribing a
photograph to a friend as "the bluest of the blue
chickens." Collins, in a statewide campaign, gave
out blue feathers to campaign supporters.
Governor Collins explains: "My guess is that the
phrase is some sort of derivation of 'blue chip'
or 'blue chipper.' We used the blue feathers as a
badge of special loyalty, a bird so rare I don't
think anybody has ever seen one. We thought this
would provoke interest and talk but it is
difficult to assess the actual end effect."

[LeRoy Collins, Tallahassee, House 1935-1939,
Senate 1941-1943, 1947-1953. Governor 1955-1961.]

BOARD, THE; sometimes THE TOTE BOARD The panels of
the voting machine showing electronically how
members have voted. See Electric voting.

BOX, THE; or COST BOX The law requires each agency
to show on printed matter, of more than 500
copies, the cost of preparing and distributing
this publication and the public purpose sought to
be served by its publication. This boxed
statement affixed to each state document is known
as "the box."

BUBBLE In the old Chamber of the House, on each side
at the front, there were two small glass-enclosed
areas originally intended to accommodate the
press. These were known as the "bubbles." One of
these was used to house the team from the House
Bill Drafting Service which helps members with the
drafting of floor amendments. The other was used
for conferences by small groups of legislators
during sessions. This arrangement was carried
forward in the present Chamber but at the rear of
the hall.

BUDGET The detailed statement by the Governor of the
money needs of the departments of the state for
the next two fiscal years. There are other
budgets, departmental, operating, and so forth,
but when legislators speak of "the budget," they
usually mean the one submitted to them by the
Governor on behalf of the Executive, Judicial and
Legislative Departments.

BY REQUEST A legislator may add "by request" to his
name in introducing a bill. This means he has
introduced the bill at the request of a
constituent, some governmental agency, or an


CALENDAR The Calendar is a listing of the bills (and
other proposed legislation) reported from
committees and generally ready for floor
consideration. Usually, a calendar is the printed

daily list of the bills, by their titles.
However, calendar can be used in an intangible
sense, as a stage in the process of making a bill
eligible for consideration. The Calendar also
lists meetings of committees scheduled for that
day. There also are calendars of the legislation
given priority by the Committee on Rules and
Calendar and calendars of local legislation. Like
the Journal, the Calendars in printed form are
available to legislators and the public on the
morning of each legislative day. The public may
obtain copies from the Documents Office, Division
of the Clerk's Office.

CALENDAR, CONSENT See Consent Calendar.

CALL, THE This is the proclamation of the Governor
(or of the presiding officers of the House and
Senate) convening the Legislature in special
session and stating the necessity for the session.
The Legislature is restricted to considering only
matters pertaining directly to the Call unless, by
a two-thirds vote of the members elected to each
house, it is decided to consider a bill on another

CAMPAIGN LAMENT -- By Representative George Crady:

There's gratitude for all of those who pleaded
that I run
Convincing were the arguments campaigning
would be fun
Announcement day was really swell, 'tis said
without retort
Three hundred fifty relatives showed up to
give support
The campaign posters came at last -- two
thousand forty-four
Within three days, they all were gone, and
friends demanded more
The day I stood there waving signs, what glory
did I see? My bumper stickers totaled to
four hundred eighty-three
And thirteen thousand hands I shook while
knocking door to door
Behind each hand, a smiling face would pledge
support galore

Remember when we fried the fish? 'Twas most a
sight to see
Cause fifteen hundred souls were there to
break my bread with me
No scheme was missed, my name was there for
all the world to see
Twelve thousand votes -- the minimum -- would
be the count for me
The race was lost. I now admit a recount was
not due
But those who showed to vote for me, my thanks
-- to both of you -- .

[George A. Crady, Yulee, House 1977-19 .]

CAN OF WORMS An amendment may
be opposed on the argument
that its adoption will so
change the bill as to "open
Sa can of worms."

Can of Worms

CAUCUS In the Florida Legislature a caucus is a
private (although not necessarily closed) meeting
of legislators. The caucus may be members of a
political party or members from a geographical
area or members allied for some momentary purpose.
Legislative officers are designated and nominated
within the political parties at caucuses. Party
positions on pending legislation may be determined
in caucuses.

CENSURE A resolution adopted by a house of the
Legislature condemning the conduct of one of its
members or of some other public official -- a step
short of either expulsion or impeachment.

caused by Home's Masonic ring scraping Watson's
jaw. See Filibuster (1).

[J. Tom Watson, Tampa, House 1931, Attorney
General 1941-1949. Raeburn C. Home, Madison,
House 1931, Senate 1939-1941, House 1947-1948.
John E. Mathews, Sr., Jacksonville, House 1929-
1931, Senate 1943-1949, Supreme Court Justice,
1951-1955, Chief Justice, January-April, 1955].

CHAPLAIN When a clergyman is designated by the
presiding officer to serve for the duration of a
legislative session, he is known as the chaplain.
The Senate continues to have a chaplain. The
House has instituted a system of using a different
clergyman each day, with members nominating these
to the Representative entrusted by the Speaker
with the task of scheduling the clergymen. While
they are paid a uniform honorarium of $25, the
opportunity to be "minister of the day" is so
highly regarded that clergymen travel up to a
thousand miles to offer a two-minute prayer. All
faiths have their opportunity under the House
system: pastors, priests, lay readers, and rabbis
all have appeared, including, in 1974, the first
woman cantor. But this was not always so. As
recently as 1937 it was a matter of some political
delicacy. Senators still drew for patronage jobs.
Senator Philip D. Beall, Sr., a Roman Catholic,
fished from a hat the slip with "Chaplain" on it.
Senator Beall, straight-of-face, opined the honor
was such he believed the Pope might designate a
Cardinal to serve. Other Senators urged trades,
up to three or four secretaries. Beall declined.
He left his colleagues on tenterhooks until the
opening day when it was revealed he had
accommodated the faith of a majority of his
brethren by selecting the pastor of the First
Baptist Church of Pensacola to serve as chaplain.

[Philip D. Beall, Sr., Pensacola, Senate 1935-
1943, President 1943.]

grandson of a pigtail-wearing immigrant from
China, was elected to the House after a hard
campaign against a former legislator, John B. Orr,
Jr. Gong's slogan: "Give a Chinaman a Chance."
Joe Fred Gong, a Miami grocer, wanted the best


education for his son, Edmond. So, he put him
through Harvard, where he graduated cum laude.
Then Eddie went to Hong Kong to work on an
English-language newspaper. Returning to Miami,
Eddie studied law at the University of Miami while
working full-time as a reporter for the Miami
Herald. Upon graduation, Eddie went into law
practice and eventually politics. Alone of the
16-member Dade delegation, in 1965, Representative
Gong opposed Governor Haydon Burns' plan to float
$300 million in bonds to build roads. The Burns'
plan was rejected in a statewide referendum, and
Gong promptly ran successfully for the State
Senate. As a youth, Eddie was elected Governor of
Florida Boys' State and President of Boys' Nation,

[Edmond J. Gong, Miami, House 1963-1966, Senate
1966-1972. John B. Orr, Jr., Coconut Grove, House
1955-1957. Haydon Burns, Jacksonville, Governor

"CHISELED IN STONE" This phrase, meaning to give the
permanency of language in the Constitution, has
become commonplace in the Florida'Legislature
since Representative Joseph G. Kennelly, Jr.
crusaded in a number of
sessions beginning in 1967
for writing limits on ad
valorem taxation into the
e Constitution. He made few
if any speeches in which he
failed to demand that the
l. tax ceiling be "chiseled in
stone." Kennelly and
SRepresentative Don Nichols
H went to Daytona Beach to the
London Symphony Orchestra
and later to hear excerpts
J from an opera. As the boy
V il\ll 7 sang his heart out to the
'ZZ girl in Italian, Kennelly
leaned over to Nichols and
said, "Nichols, do you know
Chiseled in Stone what he is telling her?",
to which Nichols said he
replied, "No, Kennelly,
because I don't understand Italian." He then
stated that he was saying to her, "Baby, we've got
to get our ad valorem taxes down."

[Joseph G. Kennelly, Jr., Jacksonville, House
1966-1972. Donald G. Nichols, Jacksonville, House

CHRISTMAS TREE When the Committee on Appropriations
loses control of its General Appropriations Bill,
legislators are likely to decorate the bill with
pet appropriations (usually trimmed away in
conference committee). After a number of the
turkeys have been added to the bill, it likely
will be referred to as a "Christmas tree."

CLAIM BILLS See Laws, relief or claims.

FSU Library
The Clerk and his assistants at their Chamber desk in 1905.

CLERK, CONVENING HOUSE Rules of the Senate and House
provide for the Secretary and the Clerk to convene
the body at the organization sessions. Because of
the holdover of half of the Senators, the
Secretary of the preceding session would preside
only if the President or President pro tempore of
the past session were absent. In the House, the
terms of all members having expired, the Clerk has
the responsibility for presiding. He may,
however, delegate this duty to a former Speaker or
some other person, including non-members, and this
usually is done. In 1935, Mrs. Emma Sechrest
Smith convened the House. This came about through
the death of Frank Webb, who had been Clerk of the
1933 House. Supreme Court Justice Fred H. Davis
of Tallahassee, the 1927 Speaker, declared Mrs.

Smith, as the Assistant Clerk in 1933, should
preside. Mrs. Smith presided during the taking of
the oath by the members of the new House and the
election of the new Speaker. Mrs. Smith was
Assistant Clerk for six terms. Her office then
was filled by election by the members. Between
sessions, she worked in advertising for the State
with the Florida National Exhibit. She resided in
Jacksonville until 1942, when she moved to Fort
Myers, traveling the South as agent for a company
acquiring mineral rights.

[Frank Webb, Tallahassee, House Chief Clerk 1927-
1933. Fred H. Davis, Tallahasse, House 1921-1927,
Speaker 1927, Attorney General 1927-1931, Supreme
Court Justice 1931-1937.]

CLOCK See Stopping the clock.

CLOTURE The parliamentary process by which debate is
closed. Known sometimes as the "guillotine,"
adoption in the House of the motion for the
previous question (which see) ends debate after
three minute closing statements from the sponsor
and an opponent of the matter under consideration.
(If the motion would kill the bill, its sponsor
also is entitled to a closing statement.) The
Senate presently does not honor a motion for the
previous question.

CLOUT A word popularized first in Chicago but now in
general use in Florida's government. Clout means,
as William Safire defines the word, "political
power when applied to a candidate or public
political personage; it means influence when
applied to a political leader not in the public
eye, a large contributor, or member of the palace

[William Safire, The New Language of Politics,
Random House, 1978.]

COCKROACHES See Pork Choppers.

CODING For the convenience of readers, general bills
and joint resolutions have new material underlined
and deleted material struck through. This is

known as coding. Where changes in language are
general, there appears a warning notation in
substantially these words: "Substantial rewording
of section. See Section --, F.S., for present
text." Where such a notation is used, it is

COMMITTEE A committee is a group of persons chosen
to perform specific functions. Legislators use a
number of committees. The most familiar are
standing, which are those with a continuing
responsibility in a general field of legislative
activity: for example, appropriations. There
also are select committees, whose members are
"selected" to do a particular job: for example,
to study alcoholic beverage laws. Another name
for a committee which automatically passes out of
existence after performing its assigned task is ad
hoc. (See Ad Hoc) Often, a select committee wilT
be an interim committee, meaning that it will do
its work between regular sessions of the
Legislature. A conference committee may be
appointed by the House Speaker and the Senate
President to see what can be done when the houses
have agreed in principle but differ in detail on a
specific piece of legislation. By bringing
together interested members of the two houses,
agreement often can be reached that might not be
possible if the houses had to limit their
negotiations to shuttling pieces of paper back and
forth. Rarely, a house will meet as a Committee
of the Whole, a device which enables the House or
Senate to use the greater flexibility of procedure
available to committees. Whatever the house does
in a Committee of the Whole must be done over
again when the body resumes its meeting as the
House or Senate proper. Joint committees are
composed of House and Senate members, and
sometimes of non-legislators.

in many legislative anecdotes. He was elected to
the 1927 House of Representatives from Calhoun
County before he was 21 and while a student at the
University of Florida. Later, he represented
Duval County in the 1939 House. He earned
statewide renown and a significant plank in his
gubernatorial platform by seeking to bar livestock
from highways by requiring cattlemen to fence

their pastures. By 1939, there was substantial
support for a fence law, mainly in urban counties.
What happened to the fence bill at a committee
hearing became a story which epitomized the
importance of having a committee on your side. In
part, here is how former Governor Warren recalled
the situation: "Dan McCarty and I had jointly
introduced the fence bill. I was presenting
witnesses in favor of it before the livestock
committee. When I finished, in a gesture of
fairness, I suggested to Chairman (Joe) Peeples
that the opposition ought to be heard. 'Uncle Joe'
replied: 'This committee is the opposition.' --
and so it was."

[Fuller Warren, Blountstown, Jacksonville, House
1927 Calhoun County, 1939 Duval County, Governor
1949-1953. Dan McCarty, Fort Pierce, House 1937-
1941, Speaker 1941, Governor 1953. Joe H.
Peeples, Sr., Glades County, House 1929-1933,


COMMITTEE REPORT When the House entrusts some
Member's bill to a committee, that committee may
report the bill "favorably," "favorably with
committee amendment," "favorably with a committee
substitute" (meaning the committee has accepted
the idea but rewritten the language), or
"unfavorably." The committee's report is
important, for its judgment may be overridden only
by a two-thirds vote. It is difficult to obtain
this two-thirds vote because members are reluctant
to overturn a committee even when they may
disagree with its finding.

COMMITTEES, NUMBER OF The number of committees and
the names of these change with virtually every
biennial leadership. While the House and Senate
adopt both the number and names in the biennial
Rule revision, the Speaker and the President
dictate the pattern which they believe will best
suit their purposes. For some years the number of
committees matched the number of Democrats serving
a second or more term, so that each Democrat with
two or more terms could be appointed a committee
chairman or vice chairman. That, in considerable

measure, accounts for the 76 committees to
accommodate 95 House members in 1931. The Senate,
with 38 members, had 40 committees in that year.
With the reorganization of the Legislature in
1967, the first serious effort was made to reduce
the number of committees, to 33 with 119 House
members and 25 committees with 48 Senators. The
smallest number came in the 1975/1976 Sessions,
with 18 committees for 120 House members and 11
committees with 40 Senators. Even with the
granting to subcommittees of the power to kill
bills, the volume was too much for the number of
committees to handle and the trend somewhat
reversed, with 22 House committees and 16 Senate
committees in 1977/1978 and 23 House committees
and 14 Senate committees in 1979/1980.

COMPANION MEASURE When identical bills are
introduced in the House and Senate, these are
known as companion measures. The purpose is to
expedite progress by having simultaneous movement
(in committees and on the Calendar) in both houses
on the proposal. When a house passes its bill,
the sponsor in the other house must be careful to
substitute this companion there. Otherwise, as
may happen, each house will pass its own bill but
neither becomes law. While both houses may have
acted on identical text, each will have passed a
separate bill.

COMPUTING TIME The House of Representatives, in
computing time for gubernatorial vetoes or other
situations in which days are tallied, follows the
Florida Rules of Civil Procedure. Rule 1.090(a)
provides that the day of the act or event from
which the designated period of time begins to run
shall not be included.

CONCEPT What a committee talks about when its
members are not ready to vote.

CONCURRENCE When one house agrees to an amendment
adopted by the other house, the action is known as
concurrence. After concurring in the amendment,
the roll again is called on the passage of the
bill as amended.

CONCURRENT RESOLUTION A concurrent resolution
expresses the opinion of both legislative houses.
A concurrent resolution may, for example, offer
the Legislature's felicitations on an honor which
has come to an individual. It also may be used to
mourn the passing of a distinguished citizen.
Usually, a concurrent resolution applies to non-
lawmaking matters but an exception is the use of a
concurrent resolution to express Florida's
ratification or rejection of an amendment to the
United States Constitution.

CONFERENCE COMMITTEE A conference committee is
actually two committees, one from each house,
meeting together to attempt to work out language
acceptable to the Senate and House on some measure
upon which agreement could not be reached through
amendments. A majority of the members of the
committee from each house must agree before the
conference committee report may be submitted to
the Senate and House. Neither house is obligated
to accept the report but usually they do since the
alternative could be the failure of the
legislation for that session.

CONFIRMATION The action of the Senate in agreeing to
appointments by the Governor. Until 1975, when an
affirmative report of the Senate's committee to
consider an appointment was placed before the
Senate, the question was: "Shall the Senate in
open session advise and consent to and approve the
appointment set forth in the foregoing report?"
Nowadays, the motion may be that the Senate "do
confirm" or "refuse to confirm" or "fail to
confirm." The difference between "refuse" and
"fail" is that failure to confirm conveys no
stigma of rejection. The Senate, for example,
"fails to confirm" a gubernatorial nominee who in
the meantime has resigned the appointment. The
sentence "He (the President) shall nominate, and
by and with the advice and consent of the Senate
shall appoint ." survives in the United States
Constitution but almost from the beginning the
"advice" function was not exercised and only the
"consent" was left to the Senate. Similarly, the
Governor may receive the advice informally of
individual Senators but he is by no means bound by
that advice and the phrase itself does not appear
in the Florida Constitution.

CONFLICT OF INTEREST (1) For legislators in voting,
a conflict of interest is defined in the House
Rules as any matter in which a Member "has a
personal, private or professional interest which
inures to his special private gain, or the special
gain of any principal by whom he is retained."
The legislator is required, before voting or
disqualifying himself from voting, to disclose the
nature of his interest as a matter of public
record in the Journal. Legislators also are
covered by the conflict of interest prohibitions
(Chapter 112, Florida Statutes) applying to all
public officers and employees.

CONFLICT OF INTEREST (2) When E. C. Rowell was
Speaker in 1965, the Committee on Rules and
Calendar adopted a rule relating to conflict of
interest which the Speaker regarded as, in his
words, "window dressing." He was on the rostrum
when Representative Donald H. Reed, Jr., the
minority leader, addressed the Chair to request a
ruling on a possible conflict. "Reed was just
grandstanding," said Rowell afterwards. "When he
got through, I rapped the gavel and said, 'The
Chair rules the lawyers will read the Canon of
Ethics and we laymen will read the Bible.' Take
up the next amendment."

[E. C. Rowell, Wildwood, House 1957-1970, Speaker
1965. Donald H. Reed, Jr., Boca Raton, House

CONFLICTING LAWS The Legislature occasionally enacts
two or more bills that relate to the same
provision of the Florida Statutes. What happens
then was related by Dr. Ernest E. Means, then
Director of the Statutory Revision and Indexing
Service, Joint Legislative Management Committee:
"On such occasions, the revisers must find the
legislative intent from the best evidence
available. When the provisions of two amendatory
acts are not mutually inconsistent, the language
is meshed and full effect is given to both acts.
On the other hand, when the provisions of two
amendatory statutes are in irreconcilable
conflict, the editors apply the usual canons of
statutory construction in determining which
version to publish, inserting a note to call
attention to the conflict and setting forth the

alternative text. The rejected version is
subsequently repealed by a reviser's bill. When
the last enacted of two conflicting statutes
purports to amend a section of the Florida
Statutes which an earlier act had repealed, the
course to be followed depends on whether the
substance of the amendatory act makes sense
standing alone. If it does not, it is omitted; if
it does, the amendatory act is published as a new
section in place of the repealed section, although
with a new section number assigned. On the other
hand, if the last enacted of two conflicting acts
repeals a section which an earlier act purported
to amend, the section is deleted."

CONFUSION "You're confused," replied Representative
Ben C. Williams to Representative Robert T. Mann
in 1967 debate. "You're confused, like the little
boy who dropped his bubble gum on the hen house

[Ben C. Williams, Port St. Joe, House 1962-1968.
Robert T. Mann, Seffner, House 1957-1968, Public
Service Commission 1978-19 .]

CONSENT CALENDAR The Consent Calendar contains bills
of a non-controversial nature. The Committee on
Rules and Calendar usually sets such a calendar
for Fridays. Bills may be stricken from the
Consent Calendar by a written objection from any

CONSTITUENT Technically, a constituent is a voter in
a district represented by an elected official.
However, a constituent is regarded generally as a
resident in the official's district. The thought
is that today's resident well may be tomorrow's

Constitution is amended by the Legislature
proposing, by a three-fifths vote of the members
elected to each house, the amendment and the
people ratifying this by a majority vote of those
participating in the general election. Unless
otherwise provided by law, amendments go to the
people at the next regular general election so

long as this election is held more than 90 days
after an amendment has been proposed by the
Legislature. The Legislature, by a law enacted by
three-fourths of the members elected to each
house, may provide for a special general election
to be held at least 90 days after the Legislature
has proposed the amendment. See Constitutional

to the Constitution of the United States may be
ratified by the Florida Legislature through the
adoption of a concurrent resolution by majority

Effective date of constitutional amendments.

requires the establishment of a Constitution
Revision Commission within thirty days of the
adjournment of the regular session of the
Legislature in the tenth year after adoption of
the present Constitution and every twenty years
thereafter. The Constitution (Article XI, Section
2) provides for the Commission to consist of the
Attorney General, fifteen members selected by the
Governor, nine members selected by the Speaker of
the House and nine members selected by the
President of the Senate, and three members
selected by the Chief Justice of the Supreme
Court, with the advice of the Justices. The
Governor designates one member of the Commission
as its chairman. The Commission is required to
file its report with the Secretary of State not
later than 180 days prior to the next general
election. The work product may consist of a
revision of the Constitution or any part of it.
Adoption by the electorate would be necessary.
The work product of the first such Commission,
expressed in eight revised articles, was totally
rejected by the voters at the General Election of
November, 1978.

CONTEST Occasionally, there will be a post-election
contest for a seat in the Legislature. However,
most of these are settled by the local canvassing

board. A contest rarely will reach the
Legislature itself, where each house possesses the
constitutional power of being the "sole judge" of
the elections of its members. In such cases, a
Member whose seating is disputed will be asked to
stand aside at the time of the ceremonial oath-
taking. A committee then is appointed to consider
the question, and its recommendation eventually
goes to the body.

CO-SPONSOR The Legislator introducing a bill is
known as the prime sponsor and his name appears
first on the jacket and in the Journal. Those who
"sign on" afterwards are known as co-sponsors.

CROCODILE CITY As time passed, some citizens found
"Alligator" distasteful as the name of the seat of
Columbia County. They caused the 1858 Senate to
pass a bill changing its name to Lake City. In
the House, a puckish Member moved to amend by
substituting "Crocodile" for "Lake." Fortunately
for the Lake City boosters, the amendment failed.

CUT-OFF The volume of legislation has caused the
Senate and House to stop introduction by
increasingly earlier deadlines. These deadlines
are known as the "cut-off."


DAISY-CHAIN When the 1957 Legislature proposed a
general revision of the 1885 Constitution, it did
so by a series of interlocking amendments. To
prevent the electorate from picking and choosing
among the fourteen separate amendments, the
Legislature attached a provision which said that
if one amendment was defeated, all would fail.
This was know as the "daisy-chain." The Supreme
Court, before the election, struck down this
approach to constitutional revision.

DANCES, PROPOSED BAN The 1921 House dallied with a
bill to prohibit "the dancing in public places of
the popular dances commonly known as the 'shimmy-
she-wobbles,' 'buzzard lope,' 'chicken switch,'

'Philadelphia twist,' 'turntable gallop,' 'cheek-
to-cheek,' 'rabbit hop,' 'shimmy-shaker,'
'koochie-koochie,' flapdoodlee back slide,'
'donkey wiggle,' 'high kicker cake walk,' or any
other similar lewd, lascivious or immoral dances,
wiggle or motion." The bill had been introduced
by a West Florida Representative at a
constituent's request. Likely, he was startled
when the House whisked the bill to the Calendar
without the customary reference to committee and
then, in a further extraordinary step, ordered its
floor consideration at a special day and hour. In
fact, the Member may have felt he was in for a
difficult time from humorists among his colleagues
for, before the time for consideration arrived, he
withdrew the bill.

DEAN The senior member of a legislative house as
determined in years served. See Seniority.

DEBATE Debate is a formal statement of the reasons
for (or against) some proposed action. A
legislator desiring to debate first must gain
recognition from.the presiding officer, who
possesses inherent discretion in extending this
privilege. In other words, when two legislators
arise at approximately the same moment, the
presiding officer decides which shall speak first.

DEBATE, LIMITS ON In the Senate, no Senator may
speak more than 30 minutes, except with the
consent of a majority of those present. However,
by a two-thirds vote, debate may be limited. In
the House, no Representative may speak for more
than 15 minutes (10 minutes after the first 20
calendar days of a regular session). By a
majority vote, debate may be limited to 20 minutes
for each side, or a longer period if stated in the
motion. By a two-thirds vote debate may be
limited to a shorter time. However, adoption of a
motion for "the previous question" ends all debate
in the House except for three minutes each for a
proponent and an opponent. In both houses, the
Member sponsoring the motion under debate has the
right to the closing argument. If the pending
motion has the effect, if adopted, of killing the
main question -- say, a motion to strike the
enacting clause -- then both the sponsor of the

pending motion and the sponsor of the main
question have the right to close in that order.
See Cloture.

DEEPFREEZE To commit a bill to a hostile
subcommittee. Also, "to bury a bill."

DELEGATE Infrequently used, legislators occasionally
will so designate themselves as being members of a
county's delegation.

DELEGATION Legislators from the same county or, in
the case of districts which overlap county
boundaries, from the same voting constituency.
See District.

DESK Like the "Chair," the "desk" possesses a
special legislative meaning. The "desk" is the
operation performed by the Clerk, much of which is
remote in place from the desk at the front of the
Chamber which gave its name to the Clerk's

DIGEST A Digest of General Laws is published by the
Statutory Revision Division of the Joint
Legislative Management Committee, 726 The Capitol,
Tallahassee 32304, following each regular
session. See Pamphlet law service and Summary.

DISCIPLINE As a counter-balance to the legislative
power to impeach and convict high officers of the
Executive and Judicial Branches, the Constitution
provides the House of Representatives and the
Senate may discipline their members. The
Constitution, in Article III, Section 4(d), says
"Each house may punish a member for contempt or
disorderly conduct and by a two-thirds vote of its
membership, may expel a member." Two points in
that sentence are significant. First, it may be
inferred that an erring legislator could be meted
out a sentence short of expulsion. Two, the vote
to expel requires the affirmative action of two-
thirds of those elected to the Senate or House
rather than the two-thirds of those present
required for impeachment and conviction of

Executive and Judicial officers. However,
expulsion is the action of one house rather than

DISTRICT The area from which a Senator or
Representative is elected. The boundaries of
districts are drawn in the decennial
reapportionments. "District" has two meanings. A
Member represents a numbered grouping for ballot
purposes, and he also represents a geographical
area which he may share with one or more other
members. See Representation of the people.

DOG BILLS See Motherhood

outdoorsman's way of
saying he doesn't
believe a piece of
legislation will pass.
Senator W. D. Childers
is credited with
introducing the phrase
to the Florida
legislative lexicon.

[Wyon D. Childers,
Pensacola, Senate 1970-
19 ] That dog won't hunt

DOGHOUSE DEMOCRATS This was a phrase coined by Bill
Cox as Tallahassee correspondent for the Miami
News to describe a group of Senators who fared
poorly under several presidential administrations
in the 1970s. Among the Doghouse Democrats from
Miami were Bob Graham, afterwards Governor, and
George Firestone, afterwards Secretary of State.
However, Cox did not get the phrase into print as
the News' copy editor discarded it as "too jazzy."
Martha Musgrove, then Tallahassee correspondent
for the Palm Beach Post, picked it up and the Post
popularized it. In turn, Sam Miller of United
Press International picked up a Musgrove story

with the phrase and once used by the wire service,
"Doghouse Democrats" achieved acceptance. Mrs.
Musgrove says, "I don't think anyone ever doubted
the definition -- it applied to Democrats outside
the circle of conservative Democrats and
Republicans who ran the Senate" in those years.

[D. Robert Graham, Miami Lakes, House 1966-1969,
Senate 1970-1978, Governor 1979-19 George
Firestone, Miami, House 1966-1972, Senate 1972-
1978, Secretary of State 1979-19 .]

been a retarded child but he achieved public
respect and affection in Tallahassee. Members
first elected him as a page in the 1937 House. He
served as a page there and in the Senate until his
death in 1967. Thus, two or three generations of
politicians from over Florida knew O'Neal. As
Editor Malcolm B. Johnson of The Tallahassee
Democrat wrote at the time of O'Neal's death: He
served them, amused them -- sometimes disconcerted
them. But when they got used to his
uncontrollable, spasmodic gestures, they accepted
him as a part of the scene. Once, or maybe twice,
he turned the tables on Senator Henry Murphy or
Senator W. A. Shands or maybe both in different
years. O'Neal had been backed into a corner
outside the Senate Chamber and challenged: "You
used to be a friend of the Senate. Now that
you're a House page I hear you're telling people
the Senators are a bunch of crooks and thieves!"
O'Neal gravely replied: "No sir, Senator. I
didn't say that. I don't know how it got out on
you." Senators didn't tease O'Neal much after

[Henry G. Murphy, Zolfo Springs, Senate 1933-1939.
W. A. Shands, Gainesville, Senate 1941-1957,
President 1957.]

DOWN THE TUBE A phrase used in the Florida House,
probably first in 1977, by Representative J. Hyatt
Brown to mean that an issue was dead. Mr. Brown
believes the phrase could be traced to his reading
of George Orwell's novel 1984, which used
pneumatic tubes and "memory holes" to dispose of

documents. The phrase possibly could be related
to "down the chute," an Australian saying which
originally meant "in prison," but lately in
America, the chute used in hotels and homes for
the disposal of laundry and in other buildings for
garbage and refuse. William Safire, in his "On
Language" column in the New York Times for
September 30, 1979, supplTed other versions. He
observed that U. S. Senator Henry Jackson had
warned that unless the Soviets withdrew troops and
planes from Cuba, the SALT treaty would go "down
the tubes." Safire, compiler of The New Language
of Politics (Random House, 1978), went on to say
that the phrase had been used in politics before.
He wrote: "The phrase had been used in politics
before. When Richard Nixon was asked in 1968 why
he had campaigned for Barry Goldwater in 1964, he
replied: 'I did not just do it for Goldwater, but
to try to save congressmen, senators and governors
who were going down the tube with him.' Note the
singular 'tube' -- that's the secret to the origin
of the phrase. In surfing, 'the tube' is a hollow
tunnel which forms in the face of a long wave just
before the wave breaks. 'To shoot the tube' is to
ride near the top of the wave under the curl, or
through the hollow, or tubular, part of the curl,
as it moves along the wave. (Is that clear? If
not, pour a little suntan oil on the page.) In
time, surfers used the verb 'to tube' to mean 'to
do poorly,' since shooting the tube required an
awkward-looking stance or an amateurish prone
position. When surfers went to school and failed
a test, instead of saying, 'I flunked it,' they
would say, 'I tubed it,' or, 'I flushed it.' At
this point -- sometime in the 60's -- plumbing
metaphors merged with the surfing metaphor. 'Down
the drain' and the more recent 'down the pipe'
combined with the surfer slang to become 'down the
tube.' Of late, the plumbing became more complex,
and the phrase is 'down the tubes,' plural,
distinguishing those tubes from the singular
television, or boob, tube."

[J. Hyatt Brown, Daytona Beach, House 1972-19
Speaker 1978-1980.]

DOWNSTAIRS Often expressed as "the man downstairs"
when referring to the Governor but otherwise in a
general sense to the Governor and Cabinet members

whose offices are on the first floor of the
Capitol, or downstairs from the legislative floor.

a public address system was delayed a number of
sessions because of an incident that occurred
during a trial installation of a microphone on the
President's rostrum for the 1931 Session. The
President, Pat Whitaker, had left the chore of
presiding to another Senator so he could attend to
some duty in his office. While away, the Senate
became snarled in a parliamentary sense on some
matter of importance to the President. In that
Senate Chamber (1923-1945) the spectators' gallery
was faced by the President's rostrum. As dresses
shortened, this proved something of a distraction
to those who faced the gallery -- anyone on the
President's rostrum and legislative newsmen. When
President Whitaker learned of the problem that
day, he rushed back into the Chamber and bounded
up the steps of the rostrum. Then, in what he
intended for immediate hearing but was amplified
for all to hear, he snapped: ". .(expletive
deleted), if you'd keep your eyes on the Senate
instead of the gallery, you wouldn't get us all in
trouble!" The microphone was removed after that
day's session, not to be returned for some ten

[Patrick C. Whitaker, Tampa, House 1925, Senate
1927-1933, 1939-1941, President 1931.]

DRUNKENNESS, DEFINITION Claude Pepper was a member
of the Florida House of Representatives from
Taylor County before going on to Congress. As
Senator Pepper once wrote, a very serious, sober-
minded advocate of prohibition from Gilchrist
County finally got up for consideration in the
House a bill to define drunkenness due to some
apparent defect in the law at that time on the
subject. When his bill was called, those present
could just see him almost swelling with
satisfaction at the prospect of an early passage
of his bill upon which he expected, no doubt, to
make good capital with the prohibitionists of
Trenton and thereabouts. Some of the members of
the House, however, sensing the possible humor of
the situation offered an amendment running
something like this: "He is not drunk who from

the floor can rise to drink once more; but he is
drunk who upon the floor prostrate lies and can
neither drink nor rise." The Speaker, being in on
the matter, put the question before the author of
the bill had a chance to protest. The Gilchrist
County Representative was flabbergasted but still
thought that the author of the amendment would get
no support. But as the voice roll call went "aye,
aye, aye," he got redder and redder and more and
more embarrassed. Finally, when the roll call was
about half finished and every vote was "aye" he
got up from his seat, walked down the aisle, took
his hat off a hook at the rear of the Chamber and
stalked out. He was the most mortified fellow
Pepper had ever seen, with his hopes of appealing
to the prohibition vote utterly lost and with the
Chamber in an uproar of laughter. Of course,
after the amendment was adopted, the motion was

[Claude D. Pepper, Perry, House 1929.
Tallahassee, U. S. Senate 1936-1944. Miami, U. S.
House of Representatives 1962-19 .]

DUELS, POLITICAL Duelling was not an uncommon
activity in pre-Civil War Florida although the
Legislative Council as early as 1832 had outlawed
both duels and the branding of a man as a coward
for refusing to accept a challenge. Yet the most
famous encounter involved early Florida political
leaders. Leigh Read was a Member of the
Legislative Council from Leon County. He was a
General of the Florida Militia during Indian
warfare. He also was a signer of the St. Joseph
Constitution of 1839, which included a prohibition
against anyone holding a public office who
participated in a duel. This prohibition was
invoked against not only the duellists but seconds
and other persons "who shall in any manner aid, or
assist in such duel." The prohibition, in
modified form, remained in the Constitution until
the revision of 1968. General Read's antagonist
was Augustus Alston, who, while not a member of
the Legislative Council, was a leader of the
Whigs, engaged then in an abrasive contest with
General Read and other Democrats for political
supremacy. Challenged more than once by Whig
legislators, Read responded to being posted as a
coward by saying that if he must fight, he would

take on Alston, whom he described as the "bulldog"
of the Whigs. Alston obliged with a challenge.

FSU Libmry
Known variously as the Brown, the Morgan, and the City, this hotel was for a
half-century the center of legislative intrigue. It was situated on the site of the present
House wing of the Capitol.
Having the choice of weapons, Read selected a
"yager," a heavy pistol with a quick trigger. To
evade the law, the seconds chose a place north of
Tallahassee just across the boundary in Georgia.
As reconstructed by Searle Martyn, the action on
December 12, 1839, was this: "The men stood back
to back, their 'yagers' ready. At a command, each
stepped forward 10 paces. They were to turn and
fire at the count of four. But at 'four,' Alston
had not completed his turn before his weapon
involuntarily was fired harmlessly into the
ground. When Read turned, he aimed deliberately
and fired. Alston fell to the ground, killed
instantly." Alston's friends claimed Read should
have held his fire. Read's friends said death was
the chance each duellist took and Read's action
was fair. Alston's sister was said to have caused
the slug from his body to be molded again into a
bullet and sent as a symbol of revenge to Alston's
brother, Willis, then living in either New Orleans
or Texas. Sometime later, Read was dining with
friends in Brown's Hotel, across from the Capitol
[on the site of the present House wing of the
Capitol]. "It's Alston!" cried someone as a
cloaked man entered the room, shot Read in the
shoulder and slipped away. With the wounded Read
still in the dining room as friends sought to ease
the wound, Alston returned, stabbed Read, and
again escaped. Read recovered from those


assaults. He was the target of another
unsuccessful attack later. On January 6, 1840,
"prevented by the state of my wound," General Read
declined the honor of serving as Speaker of the
House of Representatives, writing the House that
he regarded his election "as an indignant
reprobation of the murderous attempt to
violate the rights of the people by an assault
upon one of their representatives." Read's luck
ran out on April 27, 1841, when he was mortally
wounded by shotgun charges fired from ambush.
Alston, convicted of Read's murder, freed himself
from the Tallahassee jail and escaped to Texas.
There a physician lately from Tallahassee
denounced Alston as a fugitive. The physician was
shot to death, and friends of the physician
lynched Alston. Legislative friends of Read
passed a bill giving his name to the county of
Mosquito. Governor Richard K. Call approved the
act on February 6, 1842, but through some
misadventure the law never appeared on the books.
A contemporary map does show "Leigh Read County"
-- including the present counties of Orange,
Volusia and Lake.

[Leigh Read, Tallahassee, Legislative Council
1837, Constitutional Convention 1839, House 1840.
Richard Keith Call, Tallahassee, Legislative
Council 1822-1823, U. S. Congress Territorial
Delegate 1823-1825, Territorial Governor 1836-1839
and 1841-1844.]


EFFECTIVE DATE A law generally becomes effective, or
binding, either upon a date specified in the law
itself, or in the absence of such date, 60 days
after the final adjournment of the session of the
Legislature at which it was enacted. Many acts
have an effective clause "upon becoming a law."
That means either at the moment of approving
signature by the Governor or the filing of the act
in the Office of the Secretary of State without
the Governor's signature.

otherwise specified, an amendment to the Florida
Constitution, after ratification by the

electorate, becomes effective on the first Tuesday
after the first Monday in January following the

ELECTRIC VOTING The device, used in the Florida
House of Representatives since 1939 and in the
Senate in recent years, by which legislators
record their presence and votes by desk switches.
Red and green lights beside their names on panels
show how the legislators voted. The device also
automatically totals and reflects the results.
From the boards, the machine is popularly known as
the "board" or "tote board."

ENABLING ACT The Legislature at times enacts a law
which becomes operative only upon the adoption by
the people of an amendment to the Constitution.
Passage of such an enabling act, in anticipation
of the ratification of the proposed amendment,
reduces the time necessary for the action
contemplated by the amendment to be taken. The
Legislature may, for example, provide for
construction of buildings at universities subject
to approval by the people of an amendment
authorizing the sale of bonds to pay for such

ENACTING CLAUSE The Constitution requires that each
law be prefaced by the phrase "Be It Enacted by
the Legislature of the State of Florida." An
amendment to strike the enacting clause kills a
proposed law.

ENGROSSED BILL When a bill has been amended, it is
rewritten to show the language as adopted. The
rewritten draft is known as the engrossed bill.
This rewriting is done in the house of origin: a
Senate amendment to a House bill will be attached
and, if accepted by the House, the bill then will
be engrossed under the supervision of the
Engrossing Director in the Office of the Clerk of
the House. Similarly, a House amendment to a
Senate bill will, if accepted by the Senate, be
engrossed by the Senate. A bill may be engrossed
more than once: "second engrossed" and "third
engrossed" bills are common. Persons often ask
for the "engrossed" copy of an act when what they

really want is an "enrolled" copy. Hence, an
engrossed bill may not be the final version. See
Enrolled bill.

ENROLLED BILL After both houses have agreed upon a
bill, and it thus becomes an act, the bill is
copied photographically on parchment-like paper,
signed by the constitutional officers of the House
and Senate, and sent to the Governor for
transmittal to the Secretary of State (unless
vetoed during a legislative session).


EXECUTIVE SESSION The Senate is permitted by the
Constitution to meet in Executive Session. This
means all persons other than Senators and the
Secretary are excluded from the Chamber.
Generally, such sessions are for the purpose of
considering whether the Senate consents to action
by the Governor in appointing persons to, or
suspending officers from, certain public offices.
The Florida Senate has not availed itself of this
constitutional right since 1967, considering
appointments and suspensions in open session. The
House does not enjoy this constitutional privilege
because only the Senate "advises and consents" to
executive actions. See Confirmation and

EX OFFICIO An officer who serves in one position by
virtue of holding another. The Majority Leader
is, ex officio, a voting member of every standing
committee of the House.

EXPULSION (1) J. Colin English, State Superintendent
of Public Instruction (the title of the office was
changed to Commissioner of Education in 1968), was
"denied the privilege of the floor and the gallery
of the Senate" by Senate Resolution 10, adopted
May 18, 1943. This followed a fracas in
Superintendent English's office involving Senator
Raymond Sheldon. The resolution stated that
Sheldon had been requested by English to come to
his office. With English when Sheldon arrived
were a member of the school boards of Palm Beach
and Highlands Counties, the Secretary of the
Florida Education Association, and the Director of

the Department's Textbook Division. very
shortly after the conference commenced, Mr.
English remonstrated in an angry manner about
statements the Senator had made in debate on the
floor of the Senate and called him a liar, which
remark precipitated a personal encounter between
Mr. English and Senator Sheldon, during which Mr.
Robert D. Dolley, a State employee and a
subordinate of Mr. English, rushed in and seized
Senator Sheldon by the throat and some other
member of the conference seized Senator Sheldon by
the arm and such parties used a great deal more
force than was reasonably necessary to stop the
fight." The Senate absolved Sheldon, "censored
and condemned" English. English, by letter,
apologized. The Senate also initiated an
investigation of textbook purchases.
Subsequently, both English and Sheldon were
unsuccessful candidates for governor but not in
the same election.

[Raymond Sheldon, Tampa, House 1937-1941, Senate

EXPULSION (2) Steve Trumbull, a reporter for the
Miami Herald, was "barred" from the Senate for the
remaining two days of the 1949 Session after he
had been struck a blow to the face by Senator A.
G. "Sandy" McArthur. The altercation occurred
just outside the Senate Chamber as an aftermath to
a day's hot debate over a bill allocating horse
racing days. The matter was precipitated by
Senator W. A. Shands taking offense at remarks he
said Trumbull had made about the way the Senate
Rules Committee had pushed the bill for floor
consideration. The bill, which provided more
favorable racing dates for Gulfstream at the
expense of Tropical Park, had been defeated by a
19-19 tie. Shands, after castigating Trumbull for
a question about the procedure, complained to
McArthur, Chairman of the Rules Committee.
McArthur and Shands met Trumbull at the Senate
door. Trumbull said: "McArthur struck at me
twice. I dodged the first blow but the second one
hit me. Several people tried to separate us, and
I was being held when he slugged me. I'm just out
of the hospital from a hernia operation, and
couldn't fight back." McArthur told substantially
the same story of the events leading up to the
fight. He explained: "We had a few words and I

got mad. It just flew all over me. I'm sorry it
happened." A small bone in Trumbull's face was
broken. The altercation occurred on May 31. On
June 2, McArthur caused to be placed in the Senate
Journal a paper headed "The Trumbull S.O.B. Poll,"
which Trumbull explained he had circulated among
newsmen as a counter to the St. Petersburg Times
Poll for the selection of outstanding legislators.
After the reading of the Trumbull ballot, Senator
George W. Leaird moved, and the Senate agreed,
that Trumbull be "barred" from the Chamber.
Newsmen asked the Senate to rescind its action and
the Senate ordered the request filed without
action. All nine reporters at the press table
walked out and continued coverage from the public
gallery. (The press table then was on the floor of
the Chamber.) Subsequently, in a later session, a
section of the public gallery was glass-enclosed
as the press gallery.

[A. G. McArthur, Fernandina Beach, Senate 1935-
1937, 1943-1953. W. A. Shands, Gainesville,
Senate 1941-1957, President 1957. George W.
Leaird, Fort Lauderdale, House 1939-1943, Senate

EXPULSION (3) The Senate began at the regular
session in 1967 the open consideration of
gubernatorial appointments or suspensions. The
reversal of custom followed an incident on January
26, 1967, with the Legislature in special session,
when four newsmen refused to leave the Senate
Chamber at the vote for an executive session
because they suspected the closed-door meeting was
for a purpose other than the consideration of
appointments or suspensions, the only
constitutional justification for closing the doors
to non-Senators. Secrecy was enforced by a Senate
rule for expulsion of a Senator who told what was
discussed in an executive session. The four
newsmaking newsmen were Don Pride of the St.
Petersburg Times; Rex Newman of the John H. Perry
Newspapers; and John McDermott and William C.
Mansfield of the Miami Herald. "It was a snap
decision," wrote Pride at the time. After much
furor, the newsmen were physically ejected by
deputies of the Senate Sergeant at Arms.

EXPULSION (4) The House of Representatives on May
24, 1961, expelled Representative E. Bert Riddle
by the required constitutional vote of two-thirds
of the members present. The vote was 82 "yeas"
and no nayss" of the 95-member House. No charge
was entered upon the Journal but informally it was
understood that Riddle had passed an offensive
note to a girl page. The Journal discloses that,
at 1:25 p.m., the House, on the motion of
Representative Mallory E. Home, authorized the
Speaker to appoint a select committee for the
purpose of "investigating a matter pertaining to
the dignity of this House." There was intervening
business but the House stood in recess at 1:37
p.m. until 1:55 p.m. At that time, Mr. Horne
reported the committee had met, heard Riddle's
"explanation and admission" and recommended his
expulsion, "effective immediately." This was
agreed to, and the Sergeant at Arms escorted
Riddle from the Chamber. The House adjourned at
2:07 p.m.

[E. Bert Riddle, Holmes County, House 1921, Walton
County, House 1941, Senate 1945-1948, Walton
County, House 1961. Mallory E. Home,
Tallahassee, House 1955-1963, Speaker 1962-1963,
Senate 1966-1974, President 1973-1974.]

EXPULSION (5) A resolution expelling Representative
Bernie C. Papy, Sr., was introduced in the House
on May 30, 1947. The resolution was one sentence
long, reading after the resolving clause: "That
Bernie C. Papy, Representative from Monroe County,
be and he hereby is, expelled from the House of
Representatives of the Legislature of the State of
Florida." After the reading, consideration was
informally deferred. The Speaker then had read a
letter from Papy tendering his resignation to
Governor Millard F. Caldwell, to be effective
immediately. Earlier, on May 19, the House
adopted a resolution requesting a Leon County
grand jury investigation of charges made on the
House floor against Papy by Representatives J.
Brailey Odham and Clarence Camp II, involving
allegations of attempts to buy votes to oppose a
bill to deny telephone service to horse
bookmakers. Before adopting the resolution, the
House struck out a section denying to Papy the
right to speak or vote in the House until the

grand jury could act. Papy was acquitted by a
jury and reelected to the House.

[Bernie C. Papy, Sr., Key West, House 1935-1962.
Millard F. Caldwell, Jr., Tallahassee, Santa Rosa
County, House 1929-1931, U. S. House of
Representatives 1933-1941, Governor 1945-1949,
Supreme Court Justice 1962-1969, Chief Justice
1967. J. Brailey Odham, Sanford, House 1947-1949.
Clarence Camp II, Ocala, House 1947.]

EXPULSION (6) Representative J. M. Rivers moved
House Resolution 108 of the 1903 Session to deny
the privilege of the House Chamber to a reporter
of the Jacksonville Metropolis for three days.
The unnamed reporter was accused of writing an
article, appearing in the Metropolis of May 20,
1903, which displayed "great disrespect for three
members of this body, and a want of regard for the
dignity due to this body." The resolution was
laid on the table on the motion of Representative
Alfred St. Clair-Abrams. That action was taken on
Friday. On the following Monday, Representative
Albert W. Gilchrist moved House Resolution 109 to
exclude the Metropolis reporter for the remaining
12 calendar days of the session. "The
resolution," declared the Metropolis article, "has
misrepresented some of the members of this House
in a manner, the effect of which was unjust and
cast a reproach upon them." The Sergeant at Arms
was directed to enforce the exclusion. This time,
the resolution was adopted.

[J. M. Rivers, Alachua County, House 1901-1903.
Alfred St. Clair-Abrams, Lake County, House 1903.
Albert W. Gilchrist, DeSoto County, House 1893-
1895, 1903-1905, Speaker 1905, Governor 1909-

EXPULSION (7) The Senate on April 29, 1872, directed
its Secretary "to omit from the roll call the name
of the late Senator from the 8th Senatorial
District." By vacating his seat, the Senate was
reacting to the decision that day of the Florida
Supreme Court in upholding the bribery conviction
of Senator Charles H. (Bishop) Pearce of Leon
County. The Court, on the same day, joined with
the Lieutenant Governor and the Attorney General
in granting Pearce a full pardon. Pearce, a black
minister, subsequently served in the Senates of
1873 and 1874.

[Charles H. Pearce, Tallahassee, Senate 1868-


FAREWELL ADDRESS Representative S. H. Melton,
styling himself "Uncle Steve," addressed the House
near the end of the 1905 Session, in part, saying:
"I am making a farewell address and want you to
consider it so, for I will not come back to the
Legislature again, 'So help me God' I am
getting old the same as some others I see around
me, and it is about time I was getting married and
settling down in life. I hope others in my fix
will do likewise." (Despite his oath, "Uncle
Steve" was back for the 1907 Session.)

[S. H. Melton, Duval County, House 1905-1907.]

FILIBUSTER (1) The longest filibuster of record in
the Florida Legislature was conducted by
Representative John E. Mathews, Sr. in 1931 when
he held the floor for approximately 19 hours
during the three legislative days of May 27-29.
His longest day was the 28th, when he was on his
feet for some seven and three-quarter hours. He
prevailed. A fist fight broke out involving two
other members with one bloodied by the cut of a

[John E. Mathews, Sr., Jacksonville, House 1929-
1931, Senate 1943-1949, Supreme Court Justice,
1951-1955, Chief Justice January-April, 1955.]

FILIBUSTER (2) The requirement of the 1885
Constitution that bills must be read in full
before the vote on final passage lent itself to
obstructionism of another kind. This was used in
1967 when Representative Ray Osborne insisted upon
the reading of the General Appropriations Bill.
The reading clerks labored and the Chairman of the
Committee on Rules and Calendar, former Speaker E.
C. Rowell, who was presiding, instructed the
sergeants at arms to keep all members in the
Chamber, even using "seat belts if necessary."
Osborne, noting the distress of some of his
colleagues who were reluctant to ask permission
publicly to leave the Chamber, finally relented.

[Ray C. Osborne, St. Petersburg, House 1965-1968,
Lieutenant Governor 1969-1971. E. C. Rowell,
Wildwood, House 1957-1970, Speaker 1965.]

FILIBUSTER (3) The same device was used in the
closing hours of the 1939 Session by those who
were trying to prevent the House from reaching
consideration of a bill to outlaw salary-buying.
They sought to accomplish this blockade by
demanding the reading of a school code which was
on the Calendar ahead of the bill they knew the
House was certain to pass if it were reached.
Malcolm Johnson, retired Editor of The Tallahassee
Democrat, was there, and here's how he tells the
story: Representative George Scofield followed
the reading of the 300-page school code with his
finger and demanded that the clerk go back and
repeat any passage which was unintelligible.
Tempers shortened. The reading clerk's voice gave
out. Some House members volunteered to read for
him. Scofield held them to every word, too. Then
Representative George Holt, a French scholar,
started reading in French and skipping whole
pages at a time. Scofield couldn't follow the
French. He stormed and roared, demanded that Holt
read the bill in English. Speaker Pierce Wood
consulted the book and ruled there was nothing
that said a bill had to be read in English. The
only requirement was that it be read in full.
Then Representative Johnny Versaggi read a while
in Portuguese jumping from section to
section. Next came Representative Marcus Frank,
reading in Yiddish. Scofield was screaming.
There was pandemonium. Representative George
Leaird jumped up and shouted: "Mr. Speaker, this
is the goddamnedest thing I ever heard of." And
Henry Wrenn, Associated Press correspondent, sat
down and wrote his famous news story lead
paragraph: "Five languages, including the
profane, were used in a filibuster in the Florida
House of Representatives tonight." Incidentally,
the filibuster was successful. After some hours
of commotion and a cram course in foreign
languages, the sponsor of the salary-buyers' bill
agreed privately to its withdrawal. Thereupon,
the Member who wanted the school code read word
for word decided he was satisfied with the code.
He never admitted his need for reading had
anything to do with the salary-buyers' bill,

which, incidentally, sailed through both houses
two years later.

[George W. Scofield, Inverness, House 1911-1912,
1927, 1933-1935, 1939, 1943. George E. Holt,
Miami, House 1937-1941. G. Pierce Wood, Vilas,
House 1929-1931, 1935-1939, Speaker 1939. John
Versaggi, St. Augustine, House 1939-1941. Marcus
Frank, Ocala, House 1939, 1949. George W. Leaird,
Fort Lauderdale, House 1939-1943, Senate 1947-

FILIBUSTER (4) Pat Whitaker, as President of the
Senate, once confided this story of a House
filibuster he had nipped. Whitaker said he was a
Member of the House in 1925 and a one-man
filibuster erupted against the General
Appropriations Bill. This was being conducted on
the final day of the session and its success would
have necessitated a special session. During the
noon break, Whitaker purchased a box of a chewing
gum laxative. Seating himself beside the
Representative conducting the filibuster, Whitaker
offered what Uncle Lonnie took to be gum but
actually was the laxative. Uncle Lonnie began
chewing four or five pieces, then arose to resume
the talkathon as the recess ended. In about an
hour, however, Uncle Lonnie broke off his remarks
and fled the Chamber with the explanation that he
was suffering stomach pains. Thus, explained
Whitaker, the filibuster was ended and the
Legislature finished its session on time.

[Patrick C. Whitaker, Tampa, House 1925. Senate
1927-1933, President 1931, 1939-1941.]

FIRST-TERMERS' LAMENT (Composed in 1975 by first-
termers Frank Mann, Tom Moore and Karen Coolman)

Tune of "The Frozen Logger"

Our Speaker, Oh how we do love him--
Love him, oh how we do
If you want your bills passed
You will love him too.


We are first-term Democrats
There's none like us we say.
We're bright, we're sharp, we're cocky,
Until that motion to lay.

Here's to the Chairman of Rules
An undertaker named Craig*
He elucidates, and pontificates
But, when he is finished, it's vague.

Here's to the Majority leader
An intelligent fellow named Clark**
He leads with his thumb, which might seem dumb,
But leaves us all in the dark.

Here is to the Minority
And to their leader named Bill***
His voice is so deep, it'll put you to sleep
But if Dick won't help you, Bill will.

*A. H. "Gus" Craig **Dick Clark
*** William G. James

[A. H. "Gus" Craig, St. Augustine, House 1959-
1963, 1966-1978. Dick Clark, Miami, House 1968-
1976. William G. James, Delray Beach, House 1967-
1970, 1972-1978.]

Tune of "Jesus Loves Me"

Tucker* loves us. This we know
For John Ryals** tells us so
All of us to him belong
We are weak, but he is strong.


Yes Tucker loves us
Yes Tucker loves us
Yes Tucker loves us
John Ryals tells us so.

*Speaker Donald L. Tucker
**Speaker pro tempore John L. Ryals

[Franklin B. Mann, Fort Myers, House 1974-19
Tom R. Moore, Clearwater, House 1974-1978. Karen
B. Coolman, Fort Lauderdale, House 1974-1976.
Donald L. Tucker, Tallahassee, House 1966-1978,

Speaker 1974-1978. John L. Ryals, Brandon, House
1966-19 .]

FISCAL NOTE A fiscal note seeks to state in dollars
the estimated amount of increase or decrease in
revenue or expenditures and the present and future
fiscal implications of a piece of pending
legislation. Each bill with fiscal implications
must have a fiscal note
attached upon favorable
report by a fiscal committee
prepared by the committee's
Staff director, so the
members will be as aware as
staff can calculate of what
the bill or joint resolution
means in money.

FLOOR, THE This is synonymous
with the Chamber, as when a
Member says, "I'm going to
the floor." Or, in stating
an intention to speak at a
session, "I'm going to take
the floor."

FLY, SEE IF IT WILL A favorite
saying during the
administration of Speaker
Richard A. Pettigrew. His
aides would unveil an idea,
ror perhaps the draft of a
bill, upon a leadership
See if it will Fly group to "see if it will
fly." If agreement was
reached on whether the
concept would fly, the leadership would try to
propel it off the ground.

[Richard A. Pettigrew, Miami, House 1963-1972,
Speaker 1971-1972, Senate 1972-1974.]

FOOTPRINT BLOTTER See Yellow River Code.

FRATERNITY, THE HOUSE AS A Once there were two
representatives locked in struggle for the

Speakership. Early one morning during that
session, each of those members received a
telephone call from a person identifying himself
as Sergeant McCormick of the Tallahassee Police
Department. The Sergeant said a man was being
held in jail who said he was a Member of the
House. The Sergeant asked if the Representative
would please come to the jail and verify the
identity of the prisoner. The stated offense was
one of a particularly embarrassing nature. Each
House Member hurriedly dressed and the two arrived
at the jail at virtually the same moment, each
with the purpose of getting his colleague set
free, without formal
charge if possible, or
on bond if not. It was
indeed a hoax, likely
perpetrated by a
Senator. House members
as a rule feel a kinship
as members of a family,
battling among
themselves on occasion "
but united against
outsiders. One of the
victims of the prank
became a two-term
Speaker of the House and
the other went to

the gentleman yield for
a friendly question?"
If he does, the
gentleman well may
regret so doing for this Frindly ue$ n
"friendly question" more
often than not will be a
dagger plunged into the
heart of his bill, all
the deeper for being


GAME PLAN This phrase was popularized by
Representative J. Hyatt Brown who earned a

reputation as a legislative strategist by
insisting upon detailed advance plotting of the
course to be followed in seeking the passage or
defeat of a bill. See Scenario.

[J. Hyatt Brown, Daytona Beach, House 1972-19
Speaker 1978-1980.]

each legislative session. Put together by the
Senate and House committees on appropriations, and
usually assembled in a conference committee, the
General Appropriations Bill distributes the money
for financing the agencies of state government.
Some of the money is derived from earmarked
sources, highway funds, for example, but virtually
all disbursements are included so legislators and
others may have a reasonably complete overview of
state spending.

GENERAL BILL See Laws, general.


GERMANE Legislative rules require amendments to be
germane to the subject of the bill being
considered. Germane means to be closely related
or relevant. Deciding germaneness is one of the
toughest questions a presiding officer will have
to answer, particularly in tax matters for the
overlappage is so difficult to separate.
Ordinarily, however, an amendment is declared to
be germane if it falls within the same chapter of
the Florida Statutes as the bill.

GERRYMANDERING Used in a critical sense, this is the
process of drawing district boundaries during an
apportionment for the purpose of partisan or
factional advantage. The word derives its name
from Governor Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts
whose party in 1812 redistricted a county with
boundaries bearing a fancied resemblance to a

GOING HOME BILL A bill passed by one house to fatten
a legislator's record in the last days of a
session when there seems
little chance of the
bill passing the other
house and becoming law.
See Turkeys.

GOODY BOOK The Council of
State Governments,
National Conference of
State Legislatures, and
other professional '
groups distribute lists
of national and regional
meetings of interest to
legislators and staff. ,
The compilation of these 4
is known as the "goody S.
book," for the
distribution of favors
by the President and
Speaker. Most attend
the gatherings because 4 3
of a genuine interest,
but some regard these as
a perquisite or reward d /f
either for hard work or
for voting loyalty. Going Home Bill

Sidney J. Catts was indicted by a Federal grand
jury on April 9, 1929, on a charge of
participating in a counterfeiting conspiracy.
Representative Sol D. Moon introduced a resolution
at the 1931 Session to require the Secretary of
State to turn the Capitol portrait of Catts face
to the wall until the former Governor was
acquitted. As Catts already had been acquitted at
a second trial, the first having ended in a
mistrial, the Moon resolution was laid on the
table. The reason for the belated introduction of
the resolution is not apparent from the House

[Sidney Johnston Catts, DeFuniak Springs, Governor
1917-1921. Sol D. Moon, Floral City, House 1931.]


GRANDFATHER CLAUSE Laws providing new or additional
professional qualifications often contain a
"grandfather clause" exempting persons presently
practicing an affected profession from having to

GUT ISSUE The heart of a proposal, as seen by the
sponsor. Or, in another context, an issue which
each legislator may have to answer for to the

GUTS OF THE BILL Generally, what a pending amendment
would remove.


HABEN'S LAW "It's important to
be right but it's more
important to be important
and even more important to
be important and right."
Representative Ralph H.
E Haben, Jr.

[Ralph H. Haben, Jr.,
'Y Palmetto, House 1972-19 .]

During the years when the
House Chamber was at the
north end of the Old Capitol
and the Senate Chamber was
Sin the east wing, the
presiding officers could not
see each other nor were they
/ in telephonic communication.
On those occasions when the
S houses adjourned sine die
simultaneously, the House
and Senate Sergeants would
A l ~ stand in the rotunda where
they could be observed by
the Senate President and
Haben's Law House Speaker. The
Sergeants would drop a


handkerchief at the
moment agreed upon for
adjournment and the
gavels would fall in
each house to formally
signal the end of the
session. Later, when
the Senate occupied the
south wing in 1947, the
need for this ritual
disappeared as the
Speaker and President
could see each other
when the Chamber doors
were swung open fully at
the time of adjournment.
This line-of-sight
arrangement prevails in
the New Capitol.
Nevertheless, from time
to time, a Sergeant will
drop the handkerchief,
primarily for the
benefit of news
photographers. Also,
there have been more FSU Libry
Dropping the handkerchief was the means
occasions nowadays than of signalizing sine die adjournment in the
in the past when the two years when House and Senate chambers did
houses adjourned at not face each other.
different times and no
signal, by telephone,
handkerchief or line-of-
sight, was necessary.

HANG LOOSE Wher. a legislator gives his word as to
how he will vote on a measure, he is regarded by
colleagues as forever bound even if subsequent
developments would cause him to vote differently.
Sometimes he will be advised to "hang loose" and
defer pledging his vote.

HEIFER DUST This is how a bill's sponsor may
characterize an opponent's arguments. In other
words, a smokescreen of invalid objections.

HIGHWAYMAN'S ROOST In the 1930s, when Edward Ball
and the Alfred I. duPont interests were seeking
the building of highways in West Florida, this was

the popular name for the Tallahassee residence
used by the duPont lobbyists.

HILL-FEVER With apologies to John Masefield, Rima
Greenberg of Tallahassee, legislative observer for
the League of Women Voters, drafted this parody of
Masefield's "Sea Fever":

I must go up to the Hill again, to the Capitol
Hill domed and high,
And all I ask is a good bill and the vote to
pass her by,
And the hopper, and the quorum, and the deft
And the faint smile on the Chair's face, and
the quick roll-taking.

I must go up to the Hill again, for the call
of the Leadership
Is a wild call and a clear call that stirs the
party whip;
And all I ask is a skillful draft with the
right co-sponsor,
One from big Dade, with a bright aide, urging
"Sign me on, Sir!"

I must go up to the Hill again, to the
Legislative life,
To the lobbyists, and the press corps with its
pens like a whetted knife,
And all I ask is a hearty "Yeal" to the
motions I've got pending,
And Sine Die and enrollment with the session's

HOLD HARMLESS CLAUSE A guaranty that, in
establishing a new formula for the distribution of
funds, no area will receive less than it did in
the past.

HOPE AND FULFILLMENT Now, as always, the Legislature
finds it impossible to please everyone. Each
session may be viewed at its convening as
representing the hopes, usually conflicting, of
all Floridians. Equally, each may be condemned at
its sine die adjournment as having failed. For
example, the Florida Times-Union hailed the

convening of one session in these words: "An era
of distinctive legislation is promised. The body
is one of more than ordinary intelligence. Wise
laws should be the rule." Sixty days later, the
Tampa Tribune passed judgment: "The actions of
the present Legislature will go down in history as
the deliberations of a body of the biggest set of
nonentities that has ever been recorded in
Florida." The year was 1897.

HOPPER The mythical depository where bills are
dropped for introduction. Actually, bills are
received by the Office of the Clerk at the profile
counter or by mail.

Originally, it meant a
bill of no significance
beyond codifying or
updating laws applying
to an agency, primarily
to eliminate obsolete
sections. However, some \ 4I
"housekeeping bills"
turned out after passage ,/
to go beyond a simple ,
brushing up and now the
term, particularly when
used by way of preface
to explanation by a
floor sponsor, may cause
a close scrutiny of the
measure. (7

Housekeeping Bill

HOWARD FRIEDMAN BILL A joshing reference to any bill
aimed at curbing activities of state agency
lobbyists. Named after veteran Department of
Education lobbyist Howard Friedman by former
Representative Phil Ashler after Friedman
successfully lobbied against a bill proposed by

Ashler. As reported by Bill Mansfield in the
Miami Herald: Ashler, irked at Friedman's success
in killing his bill, filed a bill which would have
barred lobbying by public employees. Ashler
called it the "Howard Friedman Bill." It failed.
Later, Ashler left the Legislature, joined the
Board of Regents and took up some lobbying chores
of his own. In the process, he irked a House
Member from his home town, Representative Jim
Reeves, who promptly reached down into the files
and reintroduced -- what else -- Ashler's original
bill to prevent lobbying by public employees.
(Although now aimed against Representative Ashler,
it was still referred to as the "Howard Friedman
Bill.") It also failed. However, in 1974,
Representative S. Curtis Kiser introduced and the
Legislature passed a bill requiring state officers
and employees to register and keep records of
lobbying activities.

[Philip F. Ashler, Pensacola, House 1963-1968,
Treasurer 1975-1976. S. Curtis Kiser, Clearwater,
House 1972-19 James J. Reeves, Pensacola,
House 1966-1972.]


IMMUNITY This statement of the situation in Florida
was prepared by David V. Kerns, as Director of the
Legislative Service Bureau: "There is no immunity
from arrest for legislators by reason of their
official capacity. As a general rule, a suit for
libel or slander may not be maintained against a
legislator for statements made by him in his
official capacity during official sessions of the
Legislature or its committees. This is known as
an absolute privilege. When the Legislature is
not in session, a legislator may be free of
liability for statements made in his official
capacity and on official business. At such times
he has a qualified privilege, which he may lose if
it is shown that what he said is untrue; is not
relevant to the matter under consideration; and is
made'maliciously with intent to injure the person
in question. For greater detail see 77 Yale Law
Journal 366 (1967), on which the foregoing is
based, there being no Florida decision in point."

IMPEACHMENT The process by which state officers not
subject to removal by the Governor can be accused
of the constitutional offense of "misdemeanor in
office." This is unrelated to the crimes usually
classified as misdemeanors. The House may, by a
two-thirds vote of the Members present impeach the
Governor, Lieutenant Governor, members of the
Cabinet, Justices of the Supreme Court, Judges of
District Courts of Appeal, and Judges of Circuit
Courts. After impeachment, trial is had in the
Senate, where a two-thirds vote of the Senators
present is necessary for conviction. Legislators
may be disciplined by their colleagues. See

INDEFINITELY POSTPONE A motion to indefinitely
postpone consideration of a bill is equivalent to
killing it. Such a motion may, however, be
reconsidered on the same or the next legislative

INITIATIVE The people may propose the revision or
amendment of any part of the Constitution. This
may be accomplished by filing with the Secretary
of State a petition containing a copy of the
revision or amendment proposed, signed by a number
of electors "in each of one half of the
Congressional districts of the state, and of the
state as a whole, equal to eight percent of the
votes cast in each of such districts respectively
and in the state as a whole in the last preceding
election in which presidential electors were

INPUT Derived from computer talk, input means the
people who would be affected by proposed
legislation had an opportunity to have their say.

INTERIM The period between regular sessions is known
as the interim. Committees appointed to study a
problem during this period are known as interim
committees. There are not as many interim
committees now as in years past because the
standing committees, beginning in 1966, remained
in business for two years instead of expiring with
the end of each regular session.

INTRODUCTION The process of bringing a proposed law
before the Legislature is known as introduction.
In the House, this means the sponsoring Member
brings (or sends) his bill, signed by him and
prepared by the Bill Drafting Service, to the
profile counter in the Office of the Clerk.
There, it is checked and given the identifying
number by which the bill will be known throughout
its legislative life. Passing the bill over the
profile counter is what often is called dropping a
bill "in the hopper."

ITEM VETO The Governor has the power to selectively
veto items in appropriations bills. Usually, this
means the General Appropriations Bill, for other
bills appropriating money usually are confined to
a single item.


JERKING OF THE NAVEL A synonym for being agitated.
If not coined by Glen P. Woodard, the grizzled
lobbyist for Winn-Dixie Stores, he popularized the
term among the legislative family. Representative
C. Fred Jones, Chairman of the Committee on
Transportation, twice used the words in preface to
calming agitated colleagues in Chamber debate
during the 1976 Session.

[C. Fred Jones, Auburndale, House 1970-19 .]

JOHNNY'S LUNCH BUCKET When a lobbyist's employer
directs him to seek passage of a bill, this
becomes Johnny's lunch bucket for failure may
result in an empty dinner pail. Named for a bank
lobbyist who successfully performed his

JOINT RESOLUTION Amendments to the State
Constitution are proposed by joint resolutions.
These are adopted by a vote of three-fifths of the
members elected in each house. Joint resolutions
do not require action by the Governor, and instead
go on the ballot for approval or rejection. Since
1968, however, not all joint resolutions are
concerned with amending the Constitution. The

revised Constitution provided other purposes.
One, for example, allows the Legislature to reset
the effective date of an act vetoed by the
Governor; another, for apportionment.

[Article IV, Section l(e)] provides, "The Governor
shall by message at least once in each regular
session inform the legislature concerning the
condition of the state, propose such
reorganization of the executive department as will
promote efficiency and economy, and recommend
measures in the public interest." This annual
message is given to the Legislature by the
Governor in person (although Secretary of State R.
A. Gray read the words of the ailing Governor Dan
McCarty to the 1953 Session) at a "joint session"
held in the House Chamber. If there are
supplementary messages from the Governor during a
session, he may deliver these in person or send
them to the presiding officers for inclusion in
the Journal. The Legislature has "joint meetings"
from time to time to hear addresses. Florida's
United States Senators usually address the
Legislature during a regular session. Persons of
prominence visiting in Florida are occasionally
heard. These have included Helen Keller, General
Jonathan Wainwright, and astronauts. When the
Legislature assembles for this purpose, it is
convened properly in "joint meeting." When the
Governor responds to the mandate of the
Constitution, the Legislature hears him in "joint

[R. A. Gray, Gadsden County, House 1911, 1912(ex),
Tallahassee, Secretary of State 1930-1961. Dan
McCarty, Fort Pierce, House 1937-1941, Speaker
1941, Governor, 1953.]

JOURNAL The official record of the proceedings.
Each legislative house issues its own, a daily one
for each day of a session and a corrected Session
book. The Journals record only the formal parts
of what has happened in the Legislature and its
committees. These include the titles of the bills
introduced and considered and the way members
voted on the passage of bills. Incidentally, a
record roll call can be obtained on any question
before the houses whenever five members, by

raising their hands, ask for it. (There is a
record roll call on the passage of every bill.)
The traditional formula by which the presiding
officer declares the result of a voice vote allows
time for this demand for a record vote: he first
says, "The yeas appear to have it," then pauses
and if five hands do not appear, goes on to
declare, "The yeas have it." Because the Journal
is not a verbatim record, the size in number of
pages may on occasion bear an inverse ratio to the
intensity of the floor debate. A day given over
to argument on an important bill may require a few
short entries. A day in which scores of local
bills are passed necessitates page after page in
the Journal although not a word of debate, in the
sense of argument, has been spoken. The Journal
is of vital significance, for the courts look to
the Journal for an accurate accounting of what
formal steps were taken whenever a law is
challenged on some ground of unconstitutional
passage in its legislative course. Each
legislative day, the presiding officer routinely
asks whether there are corrections to the Journal
of the preceding legislative day. As accepted,
the Journal becomes the official record. The
Journal of each day's proceedings is distributed
to legislators and available to the public from
Documents, Division of the Clerk's Office, with
the convening of the next legislative day's
session. These daily Journals, after careful
perusal for error, are drawn together and
reprinted after sine die, or final, adjournment of
the Legislature. This reprinting becomes the
official record of what the House did.


KILLER MOTIONS There are a number of parliamentary
motions employed to kill a bill other than a
straight up-and-down vote on its passage. The
most common is an amendment to strike the enacting
clause since no bill may survive without the
clause "Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the
State of Florida." Another way to kill a bill is
a motion to lay the bill on the table. A motion
to recommit a bill to committee may be offered to
kill a bill although at times this is for the
purpose of rewriting language after the bill has
been heavily amended. In those instances, the

bill may be returned to the floor for further


LAW A law is the final product of the legislative
process. It is the end result of the introduction
of a bill, its passage by both houses into an act,
and its approval by the Governor (or the
overriding by the Legislature of his veto), and
its recording by the Secretary of State. A
statute is a law after it has been organized, by
topic, into the compiled body of laws. HB 1 may
become Chapter 75-102 of the 1975 Laws of Florida
(Session Laws) and then Section 153.55 of the
Florida Statutes.

illuminating explanations of a bill by a sponsor
was, "All it does is change the law," given by
Representative Ray Mattox in the 1959 Session.
That, in its entirety, was his explanation. In
the merriment, the bill passed.

[Ray Mattox, Winter Haven, House 1957-1968, 1970-

LAW BOOKS Copies of the Florida Statutes, the
codified laws, and the Session Laws, the acts of a
specific legislative session, may be purchased
from the Law Book Distribution Office of the Joint
Legislative Management Committee, The Capitol,
Tallahassee 32304. Prices depend upon the size.
See Acts; Statutes.

LAWS, GENERAL Comment by James Lowe, Director, House
Bill Drafting Service: "Theoretically, a 'general
law' is a law which is intended to have statewide
application. But there are many laws which relate
to less than the whole state and which are still
legally 'general laws.' The Supreme Court of
Florida, in an early case, declared that 'every
law is general which includes in its provisions
all persons or things of the same genus.' A law
does not have to be universal in application to be
a general law. Laws relating to the location of

the state capitol, a state university, the state
prison or hospital are local in character but
affect directly or indirectly every citizen of the
state, and are regarded as general laws."

LAWS, POPULATION Comment by James Lowe, Director,
House Bill Drafting Service: "A population act is
the most commonly encountered type of 'general law
of local application.' It is worded in such a way
as to be applicable only to counties of a certain
specified size. Although a population act may
apply to only a few counties (or perhaps only one)
it is not considered to be a special act and does
not have to be advertised or made subject to a
referendum. Are population acts constitutional?
They can be. Subsection (b) of Section 11 of
Article III of the Florida Constitution provides
in part that: 'In the enactment of general laws
political subdivisions or other governmental
entities may be classified only on a basis
reasonably related to the subject of the law.'
Therefore, if the grouping of counties of a
certain size can be justified on the basis of
being 'reasonably related to the subject' of the
bill, it is perfectly all right to enact a law
which relates only to those counties."

LAWS, RELIEF OR CLAIMS Comment by James Lowe,
Director, House Bill Drafting Service: "In the
larger sense it (a relief act) is an act by which
the Legislature seeks to address the complaint of
an aggrieved party. But in practice nearly every
relief act or 'claims bill' is legislation which
compensates a particular person (or persons) for
injuries or losses which were occasioned by the
negligence or error of a public officer or agency.
It is a means by which an injured party may
recover damages even though the public officer or
agency involved may be immune from attack by an
ordinary law suit. A relief act may also be a
local bill, the distinction ordinarily turning on
the question of who is going to pay the aggrieved

LAWS, SPECIAL Comment by James Lowe, Director, House
Bill Drafting Service: "As a general statement, a
special act is any legislative act which meets
both of the following criteria: 1. It applies

to an area or group which is less than the total
area or population of the state, and 2. Its
subject matter is such that those to whom it is
applicable are entitled to the publication or
referendum required by Section 10 of Article III
of the Florida Constitution. Having said this, it
should be noted that it is often difficult to
determine whether or not a particular legislative
proposal comes within the scope of these two
criteria. Section 11 of Article III of the
Florida Constitution provides that 'There shall be
no special law or general law of local application
pertaining to' a specified list of topics."



House of Representatives
Number of Total Per-
Attorneys Members centage
33 95 35%
45 95 47%
35 95 37%
43 95 45%
39 95 41%
48 125 38%
42 112 38%
47 119 39%
44 119 37%
45 119 38%
46 120 38%
34 120 28%
33* 120 27%
1978 30 120 25%
29** 120 24%

* Additionally, three House members with law
degrees but not actively practicing.
**1 deceased (Cherry)


Number of Total
Attorneys Members
13 38
16 38
23 38
17 38
15 38
15 45
17 44


Number of Total Per-
Session Attorneys Members centage
1967 22 48 46%
1969/70 21 48 44%
1971/72 20 48 42%
1973/74 12 40 30%
1975/76 11 40 28%
1977/78 13 40 32%
Elected 1978 13 40 32%
1979/80 13 40 32%

LAWYERS, RED-HEADED When Thomas D. Beasley, twice
Speaker and later a Circuit Judge, addressed the
House during the 1969 Regular Session, an old-
timer could not help but be reminded of an
incident of the 1939 Session when Beasley was
resisting a bill to increase the retirement
benefits of Circuit Judges. Beasley, who had no
equal as a parliamentary gut-fighter, introduced
the following amendment: "In Section 2, line 11,
strike out the words 'after the word retirement'
and insert the following: 'Providing further that
all red-headed lawyers in Walton County shall be
retired at the age of 33 years on double pay,
based on the gross receipts of such lawyer the
year previous to this becoming a law.'" Beasley,
of course, was the only red-headed lawyer in
Walton County. The old-timer thought it best not
to remind Judge Beasley of his past opposition to
retirement benefits for Judges.

[Thomas D. Beasley, Walton County, House 1939,
1943-1951, Speaker 1947, 1957-1959, Speaker 1959.]

LAY ON TABLE The "table" is another of the pieces of
furniture which has another meaning in legislative
parlance (although in some states there still is
an actual table). In Florida, something laid upon
the table is almost certainly dead. While it
takes a two-thirds vote to take a measure from the
table, this happens very seldom when resisted.

LEGISLATIVE ADVOCATE An uptown name for lobbyist.

LEGISLATIVE DAY In the Florida Legislature, a
legislative day extends from the time of convening
until adjournment (or, if a daily session
continues, until midnight). The Constitution
provides for a regular session of 60 consecutive
calendar days, Sundays included. By rule,
however, a legislative day is defined in the House
as a day when the House is in session. Thus, the
House of Representatives usually meets for 43 or
44 days within the 60-day limit.

LEGISLATIVE LONGEVITY The typical Member of the
Florida House of Representatives serves two terms
or four years. The typical Member of the Florida
Senate also serves two terms or, since Senate
terms are four years, eight years. Here are some

Members of the Florida Legislature serving 20 years or
in House, Senate, or House and Senate -- 1822-1979


Total Years Years
Years in House in Senate

Clarke, S. D., Monticello
McKenzie, Henry S., Palatka
Watson, John W., Kissimmee Miami
Johns, Charley E., Starke
Johnson, Dewey M., Brooksville Quincy
Papy, Bernie C., Sr., Key West
Getzen, J. C., Jr., Bushnell
MlacWilliams, W. A., St. Augustine
Stewart, Elbert L., Clewiston
Dronson, Irlo 0., Sr., Kissimmee
Peeples, Joe H., Jr., Venus
Pope, Verle A., St. Augustine
Sweeny, James H., Jr., Deland
Turlington, Ralph D., Gainesville
Darron, Dempsey J., Panama City
Dutler, J. Turner, Jacksonville
?arrish, Jesse J., Titusville
Pearce, B. C. "Bill", East Palatka
Usina, F. Charles, St. Augustine
7im, Lewis W., St. Augustine
Lancaster, Howell E., Trenton
31itch, Newton A., Bronson



Total Years Years
Years in House in Senate

Calkins, James E., Fernandina 20 4 16
Cook, H. T., Bunnell 20 20
Davis, W. Turner, Madison 20 20
Lewis, Amos E., Marianna 20 8 12
McAlpin, J. W., Jasper 20 20
McCreary, H. H., Gainesville 20 4 16
Scales, Joseph H., Perry 20 12 8

Service not necessarily consecutive

LEGISLATIVE ORNITHOLOGY Prompted by a series of
objections from Representative Ed S. Whitson, Jr.
to his bill regulating bingo operators,
Representative George Firestone told the House in
1972 that he had identified a new bird in the
Legislature. "His name," Firestone said, "is the
'striped-white-tie nitpicker.'" Whitson was
wearing a red and white broad-striped jacket,
white tie, and blue shirt. "The striped-white-tie
nitpicker can be identified by its colors -- red,
white and blue -- and by the fact that it flies
backward," Firestone said. "This bird doesn't
know much about where he's going, but he's an
expert on where he's been. The male of the
species lays the eggs," Firestone continued, to
rising guffaws, "and the eggs of this bird are
square, which is the reason,
Mr. Speaker, why the
nitpicker rises from his
perch so often. The
nitpicker," Firestone said,
"has a ravenous appetite,
consuming, on an average
day, more than 6,000
individual nits which weigh,
all in all, less then five
Sgrams. The question here is
whether we want to regulate
bingo operators," Firestone
concluded with a chortle,
"or whether we want to see
how many nits a nitpicker
could pick if a nitpicker
could pick nits." "Mr.
Speaker, this is going too
far," Whitson protested,
Striped White Tie Nitpicker 66

[Ed S. Whitson, Jr., Clearwater, House 1966-1974.
George Firestone, Miami, House 1966-1972, Senate
1972-1978, Secretary of State 1979-19 .]

LEGISLATORS CAPTURED The 1864 Legislature had an
unusual problem: "Enemy (Union troops) [has]
captured, taken off and hold as prisoners" two
State Senators, one Representative and a number of
other state and county officials. "Under existing
statutes, no provisions of law exist to remedy the
evils to the public interests caused by the
absence of these officers."

LEGISLATURE, THE FIRST Of one fact we can be sure:
the legislators who come to the Capitol for the
Organization Session do so with far less
inconvenience than was experienced by their
predecessors of the first Legislative Council.
The organization meeting of the Legislative
Council had been set for Monday, June 10, 1822, at
Pensacola. On that day, several members appeared
but not enough for a quorum because of the absence
of the members from East Florida. The legislators
from East Florida -- which is to say, St.
Augustine -- could travel to Pensacola by two
routes, the unsettled wilderness by land or the
often stormy sea. Under the most favorable
conditions, the land journey took a man on
horseback several weeks. On that occasion,
therefore, the East Florida legislators elected to
travel by ship. Four members sailed from St.
Augustine on the sloop, Lady Washington, departing
on May 30. Experiencing calms and squalls, the
Lady Washington put into Matanzas, Cuba, on June
22, to renew her supplies of food, water, and
wood. She continued upon her voyage and arrived
off Pensacola on July 7, with her lawmaker
passengers nearly a month late for their meeting.
The Lady Washington was, however, unable to enter
the Port of Pensacola because of heavy seas and
lurched about for two days more until she upset.
With passengers and crew clinging for safety to
the side of the vessel, she was righted and
afterwards ran aground on the beach of Ship
Island, off the coast of Mississippi. Those four
legislators, presumably weary but glad to be
alive, nevertheless fared better than one of their
colleagues. He took a different vessel from St.
Augustine and perished in a storm. It should not

be presumed that Pensacola was a safe haven. The
Council was organized with only eight of its 13
members present, but because a severe epidemic of
yellow fever was raging in the town, the Council
moved its sessions to a country home in the area
known now as Cantonment. Among those who did not
survive the epidemic were the President and the
Clerk of the Legislative Council.

LITANY The responsive reading of numbers and
committee references which occurs in the chambers
as bills are introduced. This dialogue between
reading clerk and representative of the presiding
officer takes place in a Chamber usually otherwise
empty. This is the first "reading" required by
the Constitution.

LOBBY The House and Senate require the registration
as a lobbyist of (as defined in the House rule)
"All persons (except legislators and authorized
staff) who seek, directly or indirectly, to
encourage the passage, defeat or modification of
any legislation." The term derives from the fact
that lobbyists usually frequent the lobbies
adjacent to the chambers of the Senate and the
House, either seeking to buttonhole legislators as
they walk to and from the chambers or awaiting
legislative action which might affect their
interest. See s.11.045, F.S.

LOBBYISTS, PENALTIES Sections 11.045 and 11.061,
Florida Statutes, provide penalties for violations
of the 1978 law requiring the registration of
lobbyists. Any person swearing falsely can be
found guilty in court of a misdemeanor. Any
person declared guilty by the appropriate
committee of the Senate or House may, by a
majority vote of the Senate or House, be
reprimanded, censured, prohibited from lobbying
for the remainder of the legislative biennium, or
placed on probation. Prior to enactment of the
1978 law the penalty provided in the separate
rules of the two houses was barring a violator
from lobbying for the remainder of the session.
On June 1, 1976, the Senate by voice vote censured
a lobbyist for the State Hotel and Motel
Association because of a statement in his
newsletter which a Senator charged was untrue and

malicious. The censure carried no penalty, but a
pro-censure Senator assured the Senate that the
action was "the best of two worlds" -- a
compromise between doing nothing and suspending
the lobbyist. In the House on June 4, 1970, the
Committee on Ethics concluded there was no merit
in a conflict of interest charge made against a
House Member by a nursing home lobbyist. The
Committee did not take action against the lobbyist
because the most severe penalty would have been
banishment and the session ended the next day. A
member of the Committee said his confidence in the
lobbyist had been shattered and "I think he is
dead as a lobbyist. I think his effectiveness has
been destroyed."

LOCAL BILL See Laws, special; Advertising.

LOCAL BILL CALENDAR This Calendar is a listing of
local House and Senate bills only and is printed
when local bills are reported from committees.

LOGROLLING The strategy of aggregating dissimilar
provisions in one proposal to attract support from
diverse groups. Florida's Constitution (Article
III, Section 6) states "Every law shall embrace
but one subject and matter properly connected
therewith, ." but it is possible to fashion
bills of parts of sufficient appeal to outweigh
distasteful elements for an individual legislator.
For example, the General Appropriations Bill.

LOVED TO DEATH Now and then a bill will reach the
floor with a title broad enough for amendments to
be added by members alert to the possibility of
getting their own pet passed. Or, the bill may
seem so popular that amendments will be offered to
increase its appeal but reduce its likelihood of
getting through the other house or approved by the
Governor. The sponsor likely will claim the bill
is being "loved to death."


bill would be a main motion. Consideration of an
amendment to that bill would be a subsidiary or

secondary motion. Consideration of a bill may be
postponed but consideration of an amendment to
that bill generally cannot be deferred to another
day if the body is to continue its deliberations
on the bill. The reason is that the body meantime
well may dispose of the main question.

MAJORITY The Constitution declares a quorum of the
Senate or House of Representatives to be "a
majority of the membership of each house." "Of
the membership" means the total number of the
Senate (40) and House of Representatives (120) as
distinguished from those present or active.
Should a Senator resign, the membership of the
Senate would remain at 40. A quorum, thus, is
half of the membership plus one: 21 in the Senate
and 61 in the House.

MAJORITY LEADERS See Party organization.

MANNISMS No legislator is remembered for more spur-
of-the-moment quips than Representative Robert T.
Mann. Here's a sampling:

Rent-A-Legislator In a debate over conflict of
interest rules, Mann agreed with a Member who said
he resented the insinuation that a legislator
could be bought. "Gentlemen," said Mann, "we are
all agreed that no Member of this Chamber can be
bought. The purpose of these Rules, however, is
to assure the public that a legislator can't be
rented for several months."
Akin to a Steer Representative Mann said, in
debate, "I ought to know what a steer feels like
-- I've had the same treatment politically this
entire session."
Obesity Tolls In responding to a witticism about
obesity and its application to some members,
Representative Pratt, a heavyweight, asked on whom
the toll had been taken. Representative Mann
replied: "Ask not for whom obesity tolls; it
tolls for thee."
Mosquito in Nudist Colony Representative Ben
Williams was one of the few colleagues who could
stump Mann. (See Confusion) Once Williams told
Mann that he was like a mosquito in a nudist
colony searching for a place to light.

Subtle Point Mann, after being harangued, told
the Member, "You either have a made a very subtle
point or no point at all."
Legislator's Prestige When the House was
considering a bill to authorize special automobile
license tags for legislators, Mann offered an
amendment to include former legislators. In
support of his amendment, Mann argued: "I see no
reason for a legislator's prestige to decline as
the voters' wisdom increases."
Optimism Mann was an unsuccessful candidate for
Speaker through an unusual set of circumstances
that saw him once holding the pledges of support
from a majority of his colleagues. At the next
session, Mann, then a District Court Judge,
returned to the House to accept an award.
Standing at the Speaker's podium, Mann declared:
"If anyone had told me that I would be in this
place today, I would have believed him."

[Robert T. Mann, Seffner, House 1957-1968, Public
Service Commission 1978-19 Jerome Pratt,
Palmetto, House 1966-1970. Ben C. Williams, Port
St. Joe, House 1962-1968.]

MARGINAL A legislative district which cannot be
identified either as Democratic or Republican.
The tendency to swing from one party to the other
leaves the current officeholder out on the limb.
Safe districts once upon a time were called
"yellow dog" districts because, it was said, the
voters there would rather vote for a yellow dog
than a candidate of another party. No longer true
anywhere in Florida.

MARY ANN Not a person but the code name for the
Florida Women's Political Caucus Campaign Support
Committee. Chairperson Nancy Traver of Miami was
quoted by Bill Kaczor of TODAY newspaper as saying
the committee's name was too long for everyday
conversation and FWPCCSC was an unpronounceable
acronym. Somebody tossed out "Mary Ann" as a
substitute and it stuck.

MEAT IN THE COCONUT Despite its oldish flavor, this
phrase still is occasionally used by a floor
manager in opening his explanation of a bill. It
means the sponsor regards what he is about to say

is the significant change in law resulting from
passage of the bill.

MEMORIAL Whenever the Legislature speaks to
Congress, it does so through a memorial.

MESSAGE The Legislature receives two kinds of
message. When the Governor communicates with the
Legislature, in person or by writing, what he says
is called a "message." Generally, the message of
the Governor is "spread upon the Journal" by being
printed in the official record of the proceedings.
Then, the House and the Senate communicate with
each other by messages. Each bill is transmitted
from one house to the other by a document which
tells what action has been taken. In some
instances, one house may ask the other to take
further action. In years past in Florida, the
messages were received with considerable
formality, with the proceedings being stopped so
the Sergeant could shout out: "Mr. Speaker (or,
Mr. President), message from the Senate (or
House)!" Then the presiding officer would
instruct, "Let the message be received." The
volume of business and the absence of usefulness
caused this formality to be dropped a few sessions

MINORITY LEADERS See Party organization.

MINUTE, IT WON'T TAKE BUT A Popularized by A. H.
"Gus" Craig, Chairman of the House Committee on
Rules and Calendar from the 1975 Session through
the 1978 Session. With the House anxious to
adjourn, Craig would plead for the taking up of
another bill with the statement: "It won't take
but a minute." He said it again and again until
the saying became a standard introduction for
anyone wanting to bring up a bill.

[A. H. "Gus" Craig, St. Augustine, House 1959-
1963, 1966-1978.]

MOM AND POP The small, or relatively small,
business, as in "Our little old Mom and Pop

utility" or the "Mom and Pop store down at the

MONKEY BILL The 1927 House of Representatives passed
a bill, after prolonged debate in committee and
Chamber, prohibiting "the teaching as fact any
theory that denies the existence of God, that
denies the divine creation of man, or to teach in
any way atheism or infidelity ." The bill
also banned the use of any textbook containing
such material or "vulgar, obscene or indecent
matter." This was Florida's version of the
legislation enacted in other states which
culminated in the so-called "monkey trial" of a
teacher in Tennessee which pitted William Jennings
Bryan against Clarence Darrow. In Florida,
however, the 1927 House bill died on the Senate
calendar after the Senate Committee on Education
reported the bill "without recommendation." In
the House, a motion was made to spread on the
Journal any "undelivered speeches."
Representative F. L. D. Carr responded to the
invitation with the following verse:

I am now a legislator -
Ah, woe to me!
I'm between the Devil
And the deep blue sea.

This bloody evolution
Has already "got my goat."
On the blasted, bloomin' question
I don't know how to vote.

To gain my next election,
I know the bill must pass,
So I guess I'll ape the monkey
By voting like an ass.

Mr. Carr, however, voted "nay" on the bill's
passage. He did not return to the House at the
next session.

[F. L. D. Carr, Tampa, House 1927.]

legislator, expecting
reelection, can afford to
vote against -- in the
opinion of its sponsor. In
North Carolina, these are
known as "dog" bills, for
"Who would come between a
man and his dog?"

MOTION Action on the floor of
a legislative chamber
Results almost invariably
from some Member "moving" to
do this or that. The Rules
determine the importance (or
precedence) of a motion and
S whether its consideration
may be debated.
Motherhood Bill

MULLET WRAPPER A legislator aggrieved sufficiently
by a newspaper article to take the floor to voice
his protest likely will refer to the paper as a
"mullet wrapper," particularly if the newspaper
circulates outside his district.

MUST LIST The market basket of legislation which the
Governor, President, Speaker, legislator, or
lobbyist regards as absolutely necessary. Since
not all lists will agree, a session will produce a
number of "must" lists, occasionally in conflict.


NEWSBOYS IN CHAMBER Representative J. M. Rivers
urged the adoption by the 1903 House of a
resolution prohibiting newspaper boys from
"running at large in the House of Representatives
during the session." Representative John B.
Johnston moved the resolution be laid upon the
table, which was agreed to.

[J. M. Rivers, Alachua County, House 1901-1903.
John B. Johnston, Dade City, House 1893-Speaker,

NICE DAY Representative Gene Ready once told this
story of a campaign exchange: "I passed this guy
at the post office one day and asked him how was
doing. He replied, 'I'm minding my own business
like you should be doing.' I replied that I
thought I was minding my own business. Then he
said, 'Ya'll politicians ain't nothing but a bunch
of crooks anyhow,' and turned and walked away. So
I grinned and called after him, 'Have a nice day
now,' whereupon he yelled back, 'I won't if'n you
want me to.'"

[Gene Ready, Lakeland, House 1976-19 .]

this phrase was quoted in an 1866 opinion by
Surrogate Gideon J. Tucker of New York. The
expression has become particularly popular
nowadays among those who quite likely never
troubled themselves to read Surrogate Tucker's
opinion, styled "The final accounting in the
estate of A.B." The case involved an estate
which had been distributed on the basis of an
opinion given heirs by "A.B.," "who in his
lifetime was an eminent attorney." The suit was
against A.B.'s estate. The Surrogate found that,
after forty years of the successful practice of
law, the attorney had erred. "He did not remember
that it might be necessary to look at the statutes
of the year before. Perhaps he had forgotten the
saying, that 'no man's life, liberty or property
are safe while the Legislature is in session.'"
The Surrogate held the lawyer could not be
"excused for ignorance of the public statutes of
the State." Therefore, he assessed damages
against the lawyer's estate.

NO QUESTIONS, ONLY ANSWERS The committee chairman
opened a meeting with the admonition that he was
weary of questions and wanted only answers.
Whereupon, the staff director brightly announced:
"3.14159265." The chairman looked at the staff
director with mingled befuddlement and dismay, and
demanded to know: "What did you say?" The soon-
to-be-going staff director responded: "You asked
for an answer. That's an answer: Pi, the ratio
of the circumference of a circle to its diameter."

NONCONTROVERSIAL BILLS Generally a bill on which the
explanation can be concluded within two minutes is
considered noncontroversial. The standing
committees designate bills as noncontroversial,
and bills so designated are
given consideration by the
Committee on Rules and
EA"' Calendar when preparing a
Consent Calendar.

NOSE COUNT The informal
polling, usually by the
EAYS[ party whips, to determine
the sense of a legislative
S A house or caucus on specific

Nose Count

NUTALL RISE See Blood oath.


OFF THE HOOK Sometimes the majority leader or
sponsor of a bill will find he has enough votes
and can release an unwilling legislator from his
pledge. The released legislator has, therefore,
been taken "off the hook." Steven R. Weisman of
the New York Times says a Bicentennial joke in the
New York Legislature ran this way: Why are there
gaps between the signatures on the Declaration of
Independence? Answer: Because of all the guys
who were let off the hook.

OMNIBUS BILL A bill relating to a single subject but
combining many aspects. This well may join
together different facets in such a way as to
compel the Governor either to accept provisions he
doesn't want or veto the whole act. Today's term
"bus" for a multi-person motor vehicle is derived
from omnibus. The legislative omnibus often
combines the good and the bad for individual

legislators as well as the Governor.
Representative Betty Easley defined omnibus bill
as meaning, "We're being taken for a ride."

[Mrs. Betty Easley, Clearwater, House 1972-19 .]

ORGANIZATION SESSION By constitutional mandate, the
Legislature meets on the fourteenth day after the
general election, solely for the purpose of
organizing. Organizing means the taking of the
oath by members, the election of officers and the
adoption of Rules. The practical result is that
the presiding officers may appoint the membership
of the standing committees for the next two years
so these may meet for the formulation of business
ready for consideration with the convening of the
regular session in April. All members of the
House will take the oath, and at least half of the
Senate will be commencing a new term.

OTHER BILL ANDREWS, THE Representative Bill Andrews
left Gainesville during the 1974 campaign for the
purpose of picking up his children from a camp in
North Carolina. He had opposition but felt secure
about leaving for a week. As he entered his home,
the telephone was ringing. A dentist friend and
campaign supporter demanded to know, "What the
hell I had said to that newspaper?" Andrews
replied, "Nothing because I have been out of the
state for a week." The dentist told Andrews that
the medical profession was raising $20,000 for his
opponent's campaign as a result of the statements
attributed to Andrews in the Gainesville
Independent and Free Advocate. When Andrews
finally obtained a copy of the paper, he could not
believe the answers attributed to him. Examples:
.the space industry is like being married
to a whore. One day she's there and the next day
she's not." Or, "While I believe in certain
almost communistic things, I believe everybody is
basically a Communist." Or, "I know the problems,
but I don't know how to solve them either." Or,
"I believe in socialized medicine. But I believe
in certain controls where the physicians have to
give half of their working time to the
state ." Andrews telephoned the editor the
next morning and was told that he knew some
politicians would try to repudiate what they said,
so he had taken the precaution of having the

interview taped. After listening, it was apparent
to Andrews that the reporter had interviewed
someone else. The reporter said she had called
Andrews in Ocala, having obtained the number from
directory assistance. After directory assistance
said there was no listing for Representative Bill
Andrews but there was a number for William R.
Andrews, the editor called that number. The
person answering was asked if he were
Representative Bill Andrews. "Yes," the Ocala
Andrews responded. "Who do you represent?" asked
the editor. "Two refrigeration and air
conditioning companies." When the editor
explained he had been mistakenly interviewed as a
legislative candidate, the Ocala Andrews said: "I
thought something was wrong. Nobody ever asked my
opinion before." The Free Advocate began its
correction with, "We erred, goofed, made a

[William C. "Bill" Andrews, Gainesville, House

OTHER BODY In the House of Representatives, this
means the Senate. Under the Rules of the United
States House, which the Florida House has adopted
by reference, it is not in order for a
Representative to refer to a Senator by name or
the Senate as a body in terms which impugn the
motives or actions. A frustrated Representative
may sometimes come close to breaching this
prohibition. In debate on adoption of the
conference committee report on the 1976 General
Appropriations Bill, a number of irritated
Representatives were critical of the Senate.
Speaker Donald L. Tucker, urging adoption of the
report, in part replied: ". you can throw all
the stones you want at the Senate -- and about
half of them are yo-yo's -- but that doesn't
change the fact that we have to act responsibly
." Using "other body" skirts the rule. This
is a carry-over from the British Houses of
Parliament, in which neither the House of Commons
nor the House of Lords could be critical of the
other house.

[Donald L. Tucker, Tallahassee, House 1966-1978,
Speaker 1974-1978.]


PAIR In the Florida Legislature, a pair is simply a
gentleman's agreement between legislators on
opposite sides of a question to withhold their
votes. Generally, this involves an absent Member
who (1) wishes to have his attitude recorded and
(2) wants to be sure his absence will not affect
the outcome. A pair, while recorded in the
Journal, is not taken into account in tallying a
vote. Pairing occasionally becomes tricky
business because some types of legislation depend
for passage upon a certain percentage of the
members elected. Thus, pairing reduces the
chances of such a measure for passage. An example
is the two-thirds of the members present required
to pass a bill over the veto of the governor or to
advance a bill to third reading. (Another example
of an action requiring more than a majority vote
is the three-fifths needed to adopt a
constitutional amendment but that vote is a
constant three-fifths of the elected membership.)
Perhaps the best known of the overrides was that
of Governor Doyle E. Carlton's veto in 1931 of the
bill to legalize pari-mutuel wagering at horse and
dog tracks (and, subsequently, jai alai frontons).
This was engineered by a combination of persuading
members either to pair or to absent themselves
from the Chamber -- to "take a walk." It would
seem that pairing "yea" votes with "nay" votes
would do nothing more than reduce the totals on
each side but because of the fractions involved in
a two-thirds vote, this is not entirely true. In
the case of the House vote on the Carlton veto,
the actual result was 55 "yeas," 26 nayss" with
54 "yeas" or two-thirds of 81 needed. Had 56
voted "yea" and 27 "nay," 56 "yeas" or two-thirds
of 83 would have been required. Thus, the
uncounted pair votes were decisive. There were 12
paired votes.

[Doyle E. Carlton, Sr., Tampa, Senate 1917-1919,
Governor 1929-1933.]

PAMPHLET LAW Prior to the compilation of the newly
enacted laws, printed copies of the individual
laws are available from the Department of State in
pamphlet or "slip" form. Write Mrs. Nancy
Kavanaugh, Bureau of Laws, 1802 The Capitol,

Tallahassee 32304. One copy of one law will be
furnished without charge.

PAMPHLET LAW SERVICE The Department of State
provides a pamphlet law service which consists of
the general laws in unbound, printed form mailed
in installments as they become available. Anyone
wishing this service should send Mrs. Nancy
Kavanaugh, Bureau of Laws, 1802 The Capitol,
Tallahassee 32304, a check for $10 payable to the
Department of State. You should state you wish to
receive the pamphlet law service. The $10 covers
one year's service. See Digest.

PANDORA'S BOX When logical arguments against a bill
or, usually, an amendment, do not immediately come
to mind, an opponent often will warn its passage
or adoption will open a Pandora's Box. From the
Pandora of mythology, in whose box Prometheus had
confined all the calamities which could trouble

PARADE OF HORRIBLES In summing up, a bill's sponsor
often will say, "Now that we have had the parade
of horribles, let me tell you what this bill
really does."

PARLIAMENTARY INQUIRY A legislator seeking an
explanation from a presiding officer of the
situation then existing in the house will do so by
a parliamentary inquiry. When an amendment, an
amendment to the amendment, a substitute
amendment, and an amendment to the substitute all
may be pending, a legislator well could need
guidance. However, the parliamentary inquiry not
infrequently is used as a device for getting the
last word. A legislator may say, "As I understand
it, Mr. Speaker, all those who want equal justice
for all people will vote 'yea,' while those who
are opposed to equal justice for all people will
vote 'nay'?" The Speaker usually will dryly
reply: "If you want to vote 'yea,' you will
press the 'green' button; if you want to vote
'nay,' the 'red' button."

PARTY ORGANIZATION Political leadership of a
legislative house is given by two sets of party
officials. In the House of Representatives, the
majority party functions through the Speaker, the
Speaker pro tempore, the Majority Leader, and the
Whip. The minority party functions through the
Minority Leader, the Minority Leader pro tempore,
the Floor Leader (or Whip), and the Caucus
Chairman. In the Senate, the opposite numbers are
the President and President pro tempore, on behalf
of the majority, and the Minority Leader, Minority
Leader pro tempore, and Floor Leaders (or Whips),
for the minority.

PASSED See Adopted.


PET BILL SESSION Not used as such in the House of
Representatives in recent years, this procedure
enabled each Member in turn to call up for
consideration a bill of importance to him. The
Special Order and Consent Calendars have made this
unnecessary to a considerable extent. A notable
example of its use: In 1937, Senator Ernest R.
Graham of Dade County used his pet bill option to
call up and pass the anti-poll tax bill.

[Ernest R. Graham, Pennsuco, Senate 1937-1943.]

PIGGYBACK Essentially,
this is a device for
getting half-passed
bills before one house
or the other without
going through the
Committee on Rules and
Calendar. Howard Jay
Friedman, longtime
legislative strategist
for the State Department P'/
of Education, invented Piggyback
the bypass in 1970 when

he caused five major House education bills to be
amended onto SB 656 in the House on the last day
of the session. For concurrence in the House
amendments, the Senate bill went directly to the
floor of the Senate, bypassing the reference to
committee or Calendar which would have been the
case with House bills being newly introduced in
the Senate (or vice versa). The record use of the
piggyback occurred in 1973 when the House amended
the titles and text of twelve other education
bills onto SB 622. The Senate took off five of
these, leaving the House with a net gain of seven.
The Senate added twelve of its own, which the
House accepted, thus the piggyback brought twenty
bills to passage which otherwise would not have
made their way through the process in the last
hours of the last night. Legislators sometimes
amend onto the vehicle a bill which has not been
passed but a true piggyback consists of bills
already passed by the amending house. Of course,
a piggyback only can be used with bills of the
same general subject as the vehicle. In the case
of the 1973 Session, a new umbrella title, "The
Omnibus Education Act of 1973," was spread to
cover all the educational matters contained in the
completed bill.

PISTOLS IN THE CHAMBER (1) The 1939 Session was
enlivened by a pistol display. Raymond Sheldon
was a member of the three-man Hillsborough County
Delegation, and he claimed the attention of
everyone in the Chamber the evening he arose, said
his life had been threatened over a local bill,
and waved a pistol. Representative Sheldon told
the startled House that he was not carrying the
pistol "for fun." He said six men had taken him
and a Hillsborough colleague to a hotel room and
told them "we would never live to answer the roll
call if we didn't support" the pending bill. He
promised to name names when the bill came up for
passage at a local bill session the following
evening. That promise certainly assured full
attendance and crowded galleries the next night.
The bill's sponsor started his speech that evening
with a whimsical reference to Sheldon's remarks.
He waved his hands and told the House:
"Gentlemen, I haven't a gun." At that moment,
some prankster set off a giant firecracker. The
sponsor covered his face and ducked for cover. So
did half the House. When order was restored, it

was explained that Sheldon and his colleague had
been threatened with death, all right, but what
was meant was political death. The bill passed,
61 to 20.

[Raymond Sheldon, Tampa, House 1937-1941; Senate

PISTOLS IN THE CHAMBER (2) The balloting for United
States Senator in 1897 commenced on April 22 and
by May 2 the fact that tempers were wearing thin
may be judged from this paragraph in a Tampa
Tribune account: "Senator Bailey gained
recognition of the President, and made a
characteristic speech in which he denied in a most
dramatic manner that he had been improperly
approached on behalf of Judge Raney as reported by
Representative Crumpton. The Senator exhibited a
big gun, some thought in a friendly manner, to
back his judgment."

[Edward B. Bailey, Monticello, Senate 1889, 1895-
1897, 1903-1905, House 1921. George Pettus Raney,
Franklin County, House 1868-1870, Leon County
1899-1901, Attorney General 1877-1885, Supreme
Court Justice 1885-1894, Senate 1903-1905. H. A.
H. Crumpton, Levy County, House 1897.]

POINT OF ORDER The cry of "Point of orderly" is heard
frequently during legislative proceedings. It
means that some Member is challenging either what
is happening or what he thinks may be about to
happen. Generally, he argues the action is a
departure from the proper conduct of business.
If, for example, the House has agreed to adjourn
at 4 o'clock and debate continues beyond that
hour, a Member likely will interrupt with, "Point
of order, Mr. Speaker!" This point of order will
bring the session to an immediate halt. Matters
often become quite interesting when a number of
members rise to argue a parliamentary situation
and the Senate President or House Speaker has
"Point of order!" fired at him from around the

POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY Compiled by Allen Morris.

* Success is only a matter of opinion. Failure is
a cold hard fact. Peter Gent

* As the old philosopher once said, facts are nice
but slogans sell beer. John D. Ehrlichman

* Don't say anything you are not willing to see
reduced to a six word headline. Ron Nessen

* Always be sincere whether you mean it or not.
Governor Askew

* A year ahead of the election everything is neat,
simple, logical, and wrong. Mo Udall

* It's important to be right but it's more
important to be important and even more
important to be important and right.
Ralph Haben

Half of something is better than all of nothing.
B. K. Roberts

Don't screw up on a dull news day. BC

A little vagueness goes a long way in this
business. Governor Jerry Brown

The absent are always wrong. Machivelli

You can't tell by the looks of a frog how far
he can jump. E. C. Rowell

The length of debate varies inversely with the
complexity of the issue. Corollary: When the
issue is simple, and everyone understands it,
debate is almost interminable. Robert Knowles

[Allen Morris, Clerk of the House of
Representatives, 1966-19 .]

POLITICS Representative Troy Peacock capsuled the
situation when, after a frustrating day, he
complained to the House on point of personal
privilege, "All I've got to say is that there is
too much politics in politics."

[J. Troy Peacock, Jr., Marianna, House 1937, 1947,
1948(ex), 1957-1959.]

POPULAR NAMES Some legislative acts come to be known
by the name of the sponsor. Occasionally, the
sponsor's name will be written into the law.
Among the best known and longest-lived, popular-
named laws was the Buckman Act of 1905,
recognizing Representative H. H. Buckman. The
Buckman Act consolidated Florida's public
institutions of higher learning into three
universities. Still
another was the Murphy
Act of 1937, named for
Senator H. G. Murphy.
This prescribed the
means for disposition of
lands forfeited to the
state for failure to pay
taxes largely during the
post Florida boom of the
1920s and the national
depression of the 1930s.
References to the Murphy
Act yet may be found in
the present Florida
Statutes. When the
Legislature enacted a
code of ethics for
public officials in FSU ljnbr
pu l o al Joe Lang Kershaw: Foe of Cane Pole Fish-
1974, the law was named ing License.
"The John J. Savage
Memorial Act," in
recognition of the
labors in that area of
the late Pinellas County lawmaker. Well known
nowadays is the Baker Act, for Representative
Maxine Baker, whose energies in the field of
mental health brought about the enactment in 1971
of a comprehensive law. Reference also is made
frequently by the public to the Myers Act of 1971,
which classified intoxication as a disease rather
than a crime, but its sponsor, Senator Kenneth M.
Myers, was not named in the law. Representative
Murray H. Dubbin is remembered through the
Educational Facilities Construction Act of 1974.
"The Richard R. Renick Act" of 1975, for the
protection of the coral and sea fans in the John
D. Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park in the Florida
Keys, was named for the Miami Senator but the

citation did not survive into the Florida
Statutes. An extreme example of recognizing the
legislative energies of lawmakers may be found in
the "Dempsey J. Barron, W. D. Childers, and Joe
Kershaw Cane Pole Tax Repeal Act of 1976." Such
bills sometimes are referred to as "tombstone

[H. H. Buckman, Jacksonville, House 1905, Senate
1907-1909. Henry G. Murphy, Zolfo Springs, Senate
1933-1939. John J. Savage, St. Petersburg, House
1965-1973. Maxine E. Baker, Miami, House 1963-
1972. Kenneth M. Myers, Miami, House 1965-1968,
Senate 1968-19 Murray H. Dubbin, Miami, House
1963-1974. Richard R. Renick, Coral Gables, House
1966-1972, Senate 1974-1978. Dempsey J. Barron,
Panama City, House 1957-1959, Senate 1961-19 ,
President 1974-1976. Wyon D. Childers, Pensacola,
Senate 1970-19 Joe Lang Kershaw, Miami, House
1968-19 .]

POPULATION BILL See Laws, population.

PORK BARRELISM Defined by Senator Dempsey J. Barron
as: "what the press calls money that a legislator
gets for a district other than theirs."

[Dempsey J. Barron, Panama City, House 1957-1959,
Senate 1961-19 President 1974-1976.]

PORK CHOP PROMISES The rural retreat of Florida
Power & Light Company at Horseshoe Lake in Marion
County was where John D. Pennekamp, Editor of the
Miami Herald, won the Everglades National Park
from the Legislature at the poker table in 1947.
McGregor Smith, President of FPL, had invited
Pennekamp to join some key legislators for a
weekend at Horseshoe Lake. Pennekamp was the
sparkplug of a campaign to acquire lands to be
delivered to the Federal government for the park.
After a meal of fried chicken, collard greens and
cornbread, the group settled down to a game of
nickel and dime poker. Pennekamp later recalled:
"I was a pretty good poker player in those days
but not as good as I seemed that day. I couldn't
lose. I won hand after hand. Made uncanny
draws." Senator B. C. "Bill" Pearce, already
influential although a first-termer, finally laid

down what he thought should be a winning hand,
muttering nonetheless about Pennekamp's luck.
"Sorry, Bill, you'll have to do something about
these kings," said Pennekamp, topping Pearce. The
Senator asked, grumpily, "Just how much money do
you need for that goddam park of yours?" Gambling
again, Pennekamp, who had intended to ask the
Legislature for $400,000 just to buy the Florida
East Coast Railway land in the proposed park,
replied, "Two million dollars." Pearce responded:
"Why don't you come on over to the Legislature and
get it instead of taking it out of our pockets?"
It was one of Pennekamp's favorite memories. He
relished telling it again and again. "From that
point on, we were in," he would continue. "That
was a commitment. That was the way with the Pork
Choppers. When they said something, that was it."
As a direct result of that poker game, the
Everglades National Park was put together. The
appropriations bill was introduced in the Senate
on April 14 (the session having commenced on April
8), passed the Senate on April 16, passed the
House of Representatives the next day, and was
delivered to the Governor on April 24.

[B. C. "Bill" Pearce, East Palatka, House 1933,
Senate 1947-1966.]

PORK CHOPPERS Legislative apportionment based on
people, rather than, as was sometimes said, pine
trees or county boundaries, has diminished the use
of a term which passed into the vocabulary of
Floridians during the 1940s-1960s: "Pork Chop
Gang." However, the term remains current,
generally through the accusation of "reverse Pork
Choppism" by some legislator from a rural
constituency complaining of the new urban
dominance. "Pork Chop Gang" was first used in an
editorial written by James A. Clendinen for the
Tampa Tribune of July 13, 1955, during the first
reapportionment battle of the gubernatorial
administration of Governor LeRoy Collins. Editor
Clendinen said it developed this way: "In a
preceding editorial, I charged the opponents of
reapportionment -- specifically, the Senate group
-- with fighting for pork, rather than principle.
In an editorial three days later I labeled them
the Pork Chop Gang. Since the group was dominated
by rural legislators, the pork chop struck me as
being an appropriate symbol for their self-

interest in this battle." Some Pork Chop Senators
wore, as a badge of distinction, a lapel pin
fashioned in the shape of a pork chop. Very
briefly, opposition Senators were referred to as
lamb choppers but this never caught fancy. In the
55-day reapportionment struggle of 1945, the
opposing factions called themselves cockroaches
(the rural Senators) and termites (the urban) but
neither conveyed the imagery of Editor Clendinen's
later pork chop label and quickly passed out of
use. There was brief use also of White Knights
for the Senators seeking reapportionment. Also
see Pork Chop Promises.

[LeRoy Collins, Tallahassee, House 1935-1939,
Senate 1941-1943, 1947-1953, Governor 1955-1961.]

PORK CHOPPERS, LAST OF Senator L. K. Edwards, Jr.
was known as the last of the Pork Choppers. He
dropped out of the Senate in 1968 after 14 years.
In talking with D. G. Lawrence of the Orlando
Sentinel in 1971, Edwards said the Pork Choppers
were "proud of the name and why shouldn't we be?
The thing we had in common was our country
background. A boy brought up on a farm learns
early the value of things. If you do not eat all
the cornbread on the table, you give it to the cat
or the hogs, but you never waste. That was the
philosophy we tried to live by in developing
Florida." Lawrence quoted Edwards as remembering
that critics sometimes called the Pork Choppers
"tightwads." Edwards remarked: "But we were
there when the money was needed, although we made
darn sure we were getting a dollar's worth. Don't
forget it was us who established the new
universities at Orlando and Tampa, Boca Raton and

[L. K. Edwards, Jr., Irvine, Senate 1955-1968.]

PRECEDENTS The body of parliamentary law, apart from
the Rules, is known as precedent. The individual
precedents generally are interpretations or
rulings by presiding officers on specific Rules.
Such rulings are not binding but they are
persuasive. They are useful, in particular,
because they enable a presiding officer to rise
above the controversy of the moment by pointing to
a ruling which was made on the same point at a

different time. The Florida House has compiled
and uses its own parliamentary decisions because
of the difficulty of applying decisions in the U.
S. House of Representatives since the procedure at
Washington differs so materially.

PREFILING With the amendment of the Constitution in
1966 to provide for an organization session of the
Legislature a week (now two weeks) after the
general election, it became possible for the
houses to formally receive actual bills and other
proposed legislation from members prior to the
convening of the regular session. The Clerk and
Secretary may give these bills the number by which
they will be known during their legislative life,
and the Speaker and President may refer them to
committees for pre-session consideration.

PRESIDENT The presiding officer of the Senate,
having been designated by the majority party in
caucus and then elected. Generally, he has the
powers and duties of the Speaker, which see.

PRESIDENT PRO TEMPORE The Senate counterpart of the
House Speaker pro tempore, which see.

PREVIOUS QUESTION A motion in the House for the
"previous question" has the result, if adopted, of
bringing an end to debate. It prevents the
consideration of further amendments, and requires
the House to vote upon the amendment before the
House, if any. Closing statements are limited to
six minutes, three minutes for each side. The
Senate does not use this motion.

PRIME SPONSOR The first legislator to sign a bill
for introduction is known as the "prime sponsor."
The House Committee on Rules and Calendar in 1976
made the definition official. The Committee said
only the prime sponsor may withdraw a bill after
introduction. The prime sponsor's name appears
first not only on the original bill but in the
printing of the bill, reference to the bill on the
computer, and otherwise. The next two or three
legislators who sign the bill as co-sponsors

sometimes are referred to as prime sponsors but
this simply is a courtesy designation.

PRIVILEGE This word has four separate legislative
meanings. A motion possesses privilege in the
sense of priority. A motion to adjourn, for
example, enjoys the highest priority, and must be
considered ahead of all other motions. Floor
privileges are extended to the Governor, Cabinet
officers, and former members of the Legislature
(and others) enabling them to be in the Chambers
of the Senate and House during sessions, when the
public is excluded. Finally, there are questions
of privilege. A legislator may raise the question
of privilege in his own behalf -- "personal
privilege" -- or on behalf of the legislative body
collectively. Recognition to speak "on the
welfare of the House" is an exercise of the
collective privilege. A legislator who feels
aggrieved, perhaps by a suggestion of unworthy
motive, may claim the floor on "personal
privilege" to speak his mind. This term also is
used in the sense of Immunity, which see.

PROFILE IN COURAGE See Rotating districts.


PROXIES Once broadly employed in committees, the use
of proxies was outlawed in the House in 1955 and
in the Senate afterwards. Proxies were signed
authorizations for another legislator to vote for
an absent Member. A proxy might be of a general
nature, allowing the holder to vote on any matter
coming before the committee, or limited to a
specific bill with instruction to vote aye or nay.
Proxies made it possible for absentee members to
kill or favorably report a bill. The reduction in
the number of committees and the scheduling of
these to minimize conflicts in meeting times
destroyed the excuse for proxies. An anecdote
from the proxy days: A House Member appeared to
urge a Senate committee to report favorably his
bill. Seeing no one present except the Senate
chairman and the committee secretary, he assumed
the meeting would not be held for lack of a
quorum. The chairman encouraged him to go ahead
with his presentation. When the House Member
finished, the Senator said he originally had
intended to vote against reporting the bill

favorably but he had been persuaded by the
Representative of its merit and now would vote in
favor. Then he directed the secretary to call the
roll on the bill. As each name was called, the
chairman said, "No, by proxy" until finally the
chairman's own name was reached at the end of the
roll. True to his word, the chairman voted "yes."
Then, with a profession of regret, he announced
the bill had failed. This was not an uncommon
occurrence. It happened to Senator Ed H. Price,
Jr. when he took a bill to abolish capital
punishment before the Senate Judiciary Committee,
of which Senator M. B. "Bart" Knight was chairman
in 1959. As Senator Price recalled in 1979: "The
two of us met in one of the old Senate meeting
rooms. The secretary called the roll, and Bart
announced that a quorum was present by proxy. The
only bill to come before the committee was my bill
to abolish the death penalty. Bart told me to
proceed and, since the press was present, I made a
10 minute presentation. When I finished, Bart
advised that there were no questions and he moved
the bill by proxy. When the roll was called, he
voted three proxies "no" out of his left coat
pocket and two proxies "no" out of his right coat
pocket. Of course, I (as a member of the
committee) voted a loud "aye." Bart looked at me
with that devilish gleam in his eyes and said:
'Senator, that was a great presentation and
because you almost persuaded me, I am going to
vote aye.' Bart concluded the meeting by saying:
'Senators, by your vote you have killed the bill.
Meeting adjourned.'"

[Ed H. Price, Jr., Bradenton, Senate 1959-1966.
Marion B. "Bart" Knight, Blountstown, House 1953-
1956, Senate 1957-1959.]


QUORUM The Constitution requires a majority of the
members elected to a house to be present for the
transacting of legislative business. Thus, a
quorum is a majority.

QUORUM CALL Whenever the House or Senate reconvenes
after a recess, either overnight or during the
legislative day, there will be a quorum call to

establish the presence of a majority for the
lawful transacting of business. The cry "Quorum
call" often is heard just before the taking of
the vote on a controversial measure. This serves
the purpose of putting legislators on notice that
a significant roll call is about to be taken and
brings to their seats those who may be out of the
Chamber in adjacent corridors talking to
constituents. There almost always will be a
quorum call before roll call on those measures
requiring for passage the "yes" votes of a fixed
number of those elected: three-fifths (House, 72;
Senate, 24) for constitutional amendments, and
three-fourths (House, 90; Senate, 30) for
emergency elections on constitutional amendments.


RAIL, BEHIND THE See Behind the rail.

RAILROAD When there is a belief that the House has
heard enough, a motion for the previous question
will cut off debate (the Senate does not use the
motion for the previous question). Oftentimes
there may be some dissenting members who would
have wished to talk longer and the cry of
"railroad" will be heard. Usually, this is done
in a good humored way but sometimes not. At least
once during each regular session, the House Member
responsible for a major bill handled in this
fashion will be ceremoniously presented with a
locomotive engineer's cap and perhaps a dime store
train. On one occasion, the bill's manager
received instead a cowboy hat and a whip.

READINGS Each bill or proposed constitutional
amendment must receive three readings by title (on
three separate days, unless waived by a two-thirds
vote of the members) in each legislative house
before passage. No one knows why three was
selected instead of two or four. A "reading" also
may be regarded as the stage in the progress of
legislation: certain things happen on different
readings. On "first reading," a bill is
introduced. Amendments generally are considered
on "second reading." The Constitution no longer
requires the reading of bills in full at the time

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