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Texas Politics - The Executive Branch
Vetoes: Texas Governors Since 1874 Vetoes: Texas Governors Since 1874
line-item veto
pocket veto
5.1    The Veto

One of the basic powers the Governor exercises over the legislative process is the veto, which enables governors to nullify bills, concurrent resolutions, and appropriation items. A skillful governor can use the threat of the veto to influence legislation during the session. The veto can also be used as a last resort intervention in the budget process to affect spending priorities at the end of a legislative session. Look at the "vetoes" column on the interactive governors table to review governors' use of the veto.

The power to veto specific budget items, called the line-item veto, adds another dimension to the governor's veto power. The line-item veto provides a surgical tool that governors can use to cut elements out of a bill without vetoing the entire measure. But as with other vetoes, a governor who has not laid the political groundwork for such action may be subject to criticism and can expect to be called upon publicly to justify such action in high-visibility cases.

If a governor neither signs nor vetoes a bill, it automatically becomes law without the governor's signature. This is in contrast to the process at the federal level, which in some circumstances allows a president to kill a bill without signing it or vetoing it. This process is called the pocket veto, and it is not available to Texas governors.

Texas Politics:
© 2009, Liberal Arts Instructional Technology Services
University of Texas at Austin
3rd Edition - Revision 115
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