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Monday Political Notebook

February 15, 2010
tags: state legislature
by Brett

- Some people have asked me why the focus of the blog has shifted to almost exclusive coverage of campaigns, mainly the GOP primary in MS-01. I suppose there are two main reasons. First, there is a lot going on with the primary so we will cover whatever the big stories are. And second, and probably more important, is that the legislative session has been pretty boring so far. If you don’t believe me, read what Rep. Greg Snowden (R-Meridian) said on his blog. Yes there have been some fireworks, and partisan shots, but I’m not going to spend a lot of time on a Meth bill or a so-called “policyholders bill of rights.” Therefore, I have expanded the Legislative Notebook to consist of a Political Notebook.

- It look’s like someone is about to eat some crow. Borrowing some unforeseen circumstances, the voter ID petition will make the ballot for voters to decide on in 2011. In an early January post, the Mississippi Democrats sarcastically asked, “How’s that Voter ID petition going?,” arguing that “people are more concerned about real issues instead of wedge issues.”

- Rep. Robert Johnson (D-Natchez) said this about the apparently successful ballot initiative: “We dealt with that issue. We passed out a voter ID bill that was comprehensive. It dealt with early voting it dealt with a lot of voting issues. And the senate killed that bill last year.” Okay.

- The Senate took up a measure that will lower lawmaker salaries by 10 percent. This would affect all members of the state legislature. It easily passed by a vote of 39-2 and it now heads to the House.

- While that cost-cutting measure may have survived, a bill that would reduce the size of the state legislature did not. The proposed legislation would reduce the size of the Senate from 52 to 47 and the House from 122 to 110. That bill all but dead for the year. Whether its state universities, counties, school districts, or members of the legislature- bigger is better apparently.

- Do charter schools equal racial segregation? Apparently to Democrats like David Jordan (of Greenwood) they do. Despite the outrageous racial claims by Jordan and others, the Senate passed a charter school bill by a 29-14 vote. However, when legislators start playing the race card, good things don’t usually happen. Passage of any substantial charter school bill doesn’t appear likely.

- Another controversial measure that passed the Senate but stands little chance of clearing the House is the Sunshine Attorney Act. It passed 27-19. If enacted into law, it would require more disclosure with the hiring of private legal counsel. It would also allow a state agency to retain legal counsel if there is a conflict of interest with the Attorney General.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Matt permalink
    February 15, 2010 8:31 am

    On the subject of campaign coverage: any more news on the 4th CD race and the entry of Steven Palazzo? I didn’t hear him on Gallo but saw it reported on a couple of blogs including yours–but can’t seem to find anything else about him running in the media or anywhere else.

    • February 15, 2010 10:29 am

      I can’t find anything else either. Seems very strange. But I did get an email from Mike Lott on behalf of the Tegerdine campaign stating “another Republican has announced that he is running for the 4th District Congressional seat.”

      • hoping for a Tegerdine win permalink
        February 18, 2010 9:27 am

        When someone jumps into the race just before the deadline I question their motives and abilities. Especially knowing the one he is going into the primaries with is a real conservative willing to work so hard for the people in the 4th district. Joe Tegerdine has the energy of 10 men and the direction of a real patriot.

  2. Brian permalink
    February 15, 2010 12:22 pm

    Good job on the Political Notebook and the more “newsy” focus of the blog. I think it adds a lot to the online Mississippi political discussion. Keep up the great work.

  3. Amber permalink
    February 15, 2010 1:26 pm

    I love the idea of charter schools. I am in favor of alternative education for the most part. I think some schools do a really good job of educating and preparing students but others are failing. I am in favor of segregating students but not by race. I think children should be grouped by ability. That way an advanced group could cover and master three times what a less advanced group could do. Also if tax payers are paying for public schools shouldn’t they have more input on what kind of schools they are. I also know that there is a tremendous amount of waste in time and money in the public school system. I bet alternative education options could educate a student for less than half of what it takes in public schools.

  4. Jason permalink
    February 15, 2010 10:46 pm

    Come the elections next year, I intend to cut the pay of my state senator and state representative by 100%.

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