Senate praises Obama’s service

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The Senate unanimously passed a concurrent resolution Thursday honoring the service of President Barack Obama.

“Politics aside, President Obama has served this country for eight years … We find it fitting to vote for this to recognize outstanding service,” Senate Pro Tempore Terry Burton, R-Newton, said as he handled the bill on the floor.

One senator requested a roll call vote on the resolution, and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves rushed through the vote. Sen. Michael Watson, R-Pascagoula, voted “present” on the resolution, an action reflected on the record as neither for nor against.

A good number of senators were not present for Thursday’s session.

Many of the 32 Republican members of the state Senate have slammed Obama’s policies and leadership both on social media and in comments on the Senate floor.

The principal author of the resolution was Sen. Willie Simmons, D-Cleveland. Several Senate Democrats were listed as sponsors at the time of the vote, while no Republicans were initial sponsors, though any senator may later sign on as a co-sponsor while the resolution is being considered.

Throughout the resolution, Obama is referred to by his whole name, Barack Hussein Obama.

“Whereas, having served as President of these United States for two terms, President Obama will be recorded in history to be one of the most consequential presidents in recent history,” the resolution reads. “Barack Obama did indeed change the country’s trajectory, by doing pretty much what he said he would.”

The concurrent resolution will move to the House for consideration. There are no deadlines for resolutions, meaning lawmakers can choose any day during the regular session, scheduled to end April 2, to debate the merits of the legislation.

If the House passes the resolution, the resolution would move to the desk of Gov. Phil Bryant, a vocal surrogate of President-elect Donald Trump.