After lengthy filibuster, Missouri Senate approves budget

Following a filibuster by three Senate Republicans that started Tuesday night and stretched into the wee hours of Wednesday morning, the Missouri Senate eventually approved all 13 bills of the state’s $26.1 billion budget that begins July 1.

Differences between the House and the Senate versions of the budget must be reconciled before the budget is sent to Gov. Jay Nixon.

Sen. Rob Schaaf, R-St. Joseph, who’s a physician, and two other Republican senators filibustered the Department of Social Services budget in an effort to shift 200,000 Missourians to Medicaid managed care from Medicaid fee-for-service. The filibuster ended in a compromise at about 3 a.m. Wednesday.

The Republican majorities in Missouri’s House and Senate have expressed a desire to fast-track the state budget this year to allow¬†more time for legislators to exercise their new power to override Nixon on budget issues.

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