A proposed constitutional amendment limiting the governor's veto power is headed to the state Senate. The amendment prevents the so-called "Frankenstein" veto, which allows governors to stitch together parts of one or more sentences to create legislation different from what was intended. But, it would still allow for striking of words from individual sentences. Because of that, Madison attorney Fred Wade says it clearly does not go far enough: "this is such a fundamental issue, that it's really a line between dictatorial power and democracy." If, as expected, the amendment goes before voters in a statewide referendum next April, "it will force the people of this state to vote accept dictatorial power of a governor to rewrite legislation, and make laws the legislature did not approve," says Wade , who has been involved in court cases regarding the veto power and has studied the issue extensively. "I think that's a mistake."
But a spokesman for state Senator Sheila Harsdorf , the Republican lawmaker who offered the amendment, says the measure does what they set out to do. "What our amendment did was specifically address the abuses taken by Governor Doyle over the past two sessions, and deal with that in a very succinct way," says Jack Jablonksi. "What he (Wade) wants to have is a debate over the line item and partial veto authority." Jablonski says those issues can be addressed later. A Senate committee on Wednesday approved the constitutional amendment , sending it to the Senate for final approval. If the Assembly concurs, the amendment limiting the governor's veto authority would go to voters next April.