| Red Mass Group has asked legislators for their reaction to Governor Patrick sending back Melissa's Bill with an amendment. As those statements come in, we will publish them.
Kevin Kuros (R-Uxbridge) said, "Eliminating the mandatory sentencing component of a mandatory sentencing bill is like approving a local aid bill but eliminating the funding component. Why even have a bill at all?"
Paul Adams (R-Andover) told Red Mass Group, "I don't get Governor Patrick. He's quick to prevent state and local law enforcement from implementing Secure Communities, which would take illegal immigrants off our streets who have committed felonies, and then shuttles a crucial crime bill that would keep repeat felony offenders from striking again. Gov. Patrick has some explaining to do."
State Representative Brad Hill (R-Ipswich) who has been the bill's champion for 12 years had this to say:
"I am very frustrated and disappointed at the Governor's proposal. As amended, Governor Patrick takes the teeth out of the bill's intent. The House and Senate conferees worked very hard to listen to both proponents and opponents of this bill and we put forward a balanced bill that reflected all parties. This proposal by the Governor is not supported by the majority of Massachusetts' residents, and should not be adopted. This bill is meant to take the most heinous and violent criminals off the street by serving the mandatory sentence for their third offense. The Governor's proposal guts the intent of the original legislation, which begs the question, why pass this bill if we are giving our most violent criminals any chance of parole after serving in our state prisons twice before?"
All of the responses have blasted Governor Patrick for essentially negating the entire reason for the bill, and for playing parliamentary games.