Senate

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Louisiana’s veto override clash is moving to the House. Republican state lawmakers hope to get a few Democrats in the House to rebuff Gov. John Bel Edwards and overturn his rejection of a bill prohibiting transgender athletes from competing on school sports teams with their identified gender. That appeared to be the only one of 28 bills spurned by Edwards that had a chance of becoming law in the historic veto session.

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The Louisiana House has agreed to a $34 billion operating budget for next year that includes hundreds of millions in federal coronavirus aid. They passed it unanimously Wednesday.

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The head of Louisiana’s gambling regulatory board has been ousted by state senators who refused to confirm his reappointment on the final day of the regular legislative session.

Ronnie Jones has been chairman of the Louisiana Gaming Control Board since August 2013. He was among 11 appointees selected to serve on state boards who didn’t receive approval Monday from the Senate. Senators debated the confirmation decisions behind closed doors in an executive session. They voted on a list of confirmations in bulk.

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The Louisiana Senate has agreed to change the rules for lawsuits over car wrecks. The proposal is aimed at limiting damage claims against insurance companies and other businesses. The Senate voted 29-8 Monday for the bill by Republican Sen. Kirk Talbot.

The Republican-led “tort reform” effort is a priority of business lobbying groups.

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AP Explains: U.S. Senate impeachment trial process.

Jay Curtis / KEDM

Senate candidates visited the University of Louisiana Monroe on Thursday night for the first of three KEDM political forums.  Jim Fannin, Jay Morris, and Matt Parker spoke with forum moderator Cory Crowe.

The forums are an opportunity for residents, business and community leaders to learn more about the candidates. Forums are broadcast live on 90.3 KEDM Public Radio, KEDM.org and Facebook Live; and archived at KEDM.org. 

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United States Senator John Kennedy is asking President Trump to put even higher tariffs on Chinese crawfish and shrimp. In a letter to the White House, Kennedy accused the Chinese of not trading fairly with the U-S.

 

Earlier this month, President Trump instructed the United States Trade Representative to consider whether 100-billion dollars in additional tariffs would be appropriate. Kennedy says he’s asked the Trump administration to give full consideration to the inclusion of Chinese crawfish and shrimp.

 

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A bill that would allow riverboat casinos to expand onto land is scheduled to be heard by the full Senate today, after being pulled from consideration last week. The bill would remove restrictions for Louisiana’s 15 floating gambling halls. Louisiana Casino Association Executive Director Wade Duty says more profitable casinos means more revenue for the state.

 

Duty says, "Having these boats on the water does not necessarily lend itself to a good revenue base for the state and also for predictable jobs."

 

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A Senate committee approves legislation that would prohibit abortions in Louisiana after 15 weeks from conception, but there are concerns the legislation could bring upon unintended consequences. Kaplan Senator Jonathan Perry urged the bill’s author to work on the language of the bill with an attorney, before bringing it up to the Senate floor.

 

Perry says that the bill is unclear "to the point that it can hurt."

 

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A bill by New Orleans Senator Troy Carter to ban the sale of assault rifles to people under 21 was killed on the Senate floor. The 9 to 26 vote ends that anti-gun legislation for the rest of the session. Baton Rouge area Senator Bodie White says the bill is not strong enough to stop the bad guys.

 

White says, "I don't know that this bill fixes that. How do you fix that person that is delusional and thinks about killing people and killing children?"

 

White compared the domestic killers to terrorists.

 

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