JACKSON -- Last week's legislative special session could be the last of the year and mark the last time for Speaker Billy McCoy, D-Rienzi, to preside over the Mississippi House.
McCoy's pending retirement, which was announced after the 2011 regular session ended, was acknowledged by Rep. Steve Holland, D-Plantersville, during last week's special session. McCoy, who is finishing his second term as speaker, received a standing ovation from members after Holland made his comments.
Holland and McCoy have a unique relationship. The two long-time desk mates in many ways are like brothers who are quick to criticize each other, but also quick to forgive and forget.
I remember one instance when Holland was upset that a member had requested a bill to be read before the final vote. The practice is invoked by members as a way to express anger or to slow the process.
When Holland objected, McCoy said the member had a right to have the bill read. He told Holland to sit down or to leave the chamber. Holland, with a great deal of furor, announced he was leaving and also encouraged other members to follow him off the floor as a sign of protest.
He got the front of the chamber, looked around and realized he had no followers. He returned to his desk.
More than likely, he and McCoy were eating lunch together the next day.