Story of Sim: Oxford's HBOL2404 Receives Unanimous Support, Signed by Gov. LeBlanc
By August Klemp, GSU
Photos by Lizzie Roehrs
Feb. 29, 2020 - Updated March 5
HBOL2404 came onto the floor of the House this afternoon. HBOL2404 amends the Uniform Code of Criminal Procedures of 1963, creating the "Dignity for Incarcerated Parents Act". This bill attempts to give more rights to incarcerated parents. This bill would give parents increased visitation rights and free phone calls with their families.
Representative Callie Oxford (D-SIC) gave an emotional speech about her bill before the house. After a fiery debate from both sides, a surprising vote of 59/0/0 with 59 in the affirmative, zero in the negative, and zero in the abstentions, the bill overwhelmingly passed.
When asked about why the bill passed with no dissenting votes, Majority Speaker of the House Mackenzi Matthews (D-UIS) said “It was a very emotional bill. While we debated for the spirit of simulation, in the end we wanted to support a great bill”.
HBOL2404 then went to the Senate floor. From the opening moments, both sides were on the same page on making it pass. What followed were several minutes of congratulations and respect for the author that had been unseen up until that point. When asked to speak on the closing statements of the bill, Representative Oxford said “I never expected such support from both sides of the aisle on my bill”.
In a vote that shocked no one, It passed in the Senate with a vote of 53/0/0 with 53 in the affirmative, zero in the negative, and zero in the abstentions. It was truly inspiring to see this bill pass with full support of the both the house and the committee. It was then announced that this was the first bill that had passed the Senate and would be the first bill that would hit the desk of the Governor. A deafening roar exploded from the crowd as everyone stood in support of such a great bill.
During Sunday's veto session, Governor Sabrina LeBlanc announced that she would sign the bill into law, making it one of two pieces of Original Legislation to pass through both chambers and the Governor's Desk during the weekend.
Oxford was presented with the Ramsey award for Outstanding Original Legislation at the end of the weekend. On behalf of all of us in Model Illinois Government, congratulations to Representative Oxford on this great bill, and we hope to see it passed into to law by the actual state legislature!