Gallente Senate Fails to Pass Reform Bill
Villore - While seeing heated discussion, today's meeting of the Gallente Senate was more orderly than yesterday's session. Debate resumed on the Bellaron-Wu proposal to limit serving public officials to a single branch of government. Gone were the shouting matches, and Senate Head Mentas Blaque imposed strict limits on speaker time and the yielding of the floor.
Ultimately, after a lengthy series of moves by supporters on both sides of the issue, a motion was carried to shift discussion of the bill to the Ethics and Conduct Committee. Though the committee holds several Senators eager to pursue the matter, the political make-up of the committee majority is likely to effectively prevent the bill from re-emerging.
Notably absent in the most vociferous dialogue was Senator Julian Hevard. For weeks Senator Hevard has been a vocal critic of Mentas Blaque, but today his quiet demeanor surprised many. Equally surprising was his abstinence from the move-to-committee vote, which itself launched rampant speculation that he'd somehow been "gotten to."
Hevard himself dispelled these claims, saying, "Throughout these weeks I have said what I felt needed to be said. Endlessly beating the pulpit will change nothing." Senator Hevard added that while he was not enthusiastic, he felt the Ethics and Conduct Committee was an appropriate venue in which to refine the bill. Hevard himself does not serve on said committee.
Foiritan's detractors have begun alleging that Blaque is simply the tool, and that Foiritan's unwillingness to censure him shows a willful interference in legislative matters by the President. This, along with growing dissatisfaction over the administration's general handling of militia actions against the Caldari, has meant a plummet in President Foiritan's approval rating, which is now at its lowest point in several years.