The makeup of the chamber is not what Bryant and fellow Republicans were hoping to achieve during Tuesday’s elections. Republicans, who held a 27-25 advantage before Tuesday’s election, will be in the minority by a count of 24-28 when the new Legislature convenes in January.
If the Democrats were to vote together, they could strip the newly elected Bryant of his powers to appoint committee chairs.
The lieutenant governor has that authority only because the members of the Senate traditionally have given him or her that power through the rules they adopt at the beginning of each term.
But both Democrats and Republicans say, first of all, that it would be difficult to get the 28 Democrats to vote in a bloc to take that power from Bryant.