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Content Tagged As senate

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  • GOP unveils initial 'Obamacare' repeal measure

    January 3, 2017 2:22 PM

    WASHINGTON - Senate Republicans have already introduced legislation that's a precursor to repealing much of the Affordable Care Act. Successful passage of the measure would allow a detailed follow-up repeal bill to pass through Congress without fear of a filibuster by Senate Democrats. Tuesday's measure doesn't contain any policy language.... more »
  • Louisiana electoral voters stick with Trump Play Video

    December 19, 2016 11:24 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana's electoral voters have cast their ballots for Donald Trump, bucking a push from around the country to abandon the Republican president-elect. In a formal vote Monday at the Louisiana Capitol, the eight electors individually proclaimed their votes aloud before a small crowd that had gathered to... more »
  • Mexico Senate passes medical pot bill; sent to lower house

    December 13, 2016 9:48 PM

    MEXICO CITY - The Mexican Senate has overwhelmingly passed a bill approving the use of marijuana for medical purposes. The Senate says in a statement summarizing the debate that the measure directs the Health Department to "design public policies to regulate the medicinal use of this plant and its derivatives."... more »
  • Kennedy: 'Lot of work left' as treasurer before Senate term

    December 12, 2016 10:03 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Fresh off a landslide win, U.S. Sen.-elect John Kennedy says he'll head to Washington this week for orientation. But he doesn't plan to immediately relinquish his job as state treasurer. The Republican winner of this weekend's runoff election said Sunday that he's "got a lot of work... more »
  • Kennedy says his election represents change

    December 11, 2016 3:05 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana's newly elected U.S. senator, Republican John Kennedy, says his campaign was about change in Washington. Kennedy, the state treasurer, won Saturday's runoff election to fill the nation's last Senate seat. Speaking to supporters, Kennedy said "Washington insiders" have taken the country in the wrong direction. But... more »
  • GOP senators join Dems to condemn Russian political hacking

    December 11, 2016 12:11 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Republicans on the Senate Armed Services Committee are joining with Democrats in calling for an examination of reports that Russia interfered in the presidential election. Chairman John McCain, incoming Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer and others said in a joint statement Sunday that the CIA's report of... more »
  • Louisiana runoff election results

    December 10, 2016 12:05 PM

    CLICK HERE TO VIEW ELECTION RESULTS BATON ROUGE - The campaign season is ending in Louisiana a month later than the rest of the country. Voters Saturday are deciding the nation's final three congressional seats in runoff elections. Top of the ballot is the competition for an open U.S.... more »
  • Former astronaut, US Sen. John Glenn of Ohio has died at 95

    December 8, 2016 3:36 PM

    Former astronaut and U.S. Sen. John Glenn has died in Ohio. He was 95. Glenn became a national hero in 1962 when he became the first American to orbit the Earth. Hank Wilson with the John Glenn School of Public Affairs says Glenn died Thursday afternoon at the James Cancer... more »
  • US Sen. Vitter bids farewell, says he was 'blessed' to serve

    December 5, 2016 5:43 PM

    BATON ROUGE - U.S. Sen. David Vitter called his tenure in Congress "the greatest honor of my professional life," as he gave a farewell speech ahead of the end to his 12-year tenure in the Senate. The Republican incumbent didn't run for a third term, after losing the Louisiana governor's... more »
  • Pence rallies for Kennedy for Louisiana's Senate seat

    December 3, 2016 4:14 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Vice President-elect Mike Pence urged Louisiana voters to back Republican John Kennedy for Louisiana's open U.S. Senate seat, saying Kennedy would be a strong partner to advance Donald Trump's agenda in Congress. Pence headlined a New Orleans rally and a fundraiser for Kennedy on Saturday, the final... more »
  • Kennedy's fundraising falls behind Campbell in Senate race

    December 2, 2016 11:56 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Though Republican John Kennedy leads in polls for Louisiana's U.S. Senate race, he lags his Democratic competitor Foster Campbell in fundraising ahead of the Dec. 10 runoff. Kennedy, the state treasurer, raised nearly $1 million less than Campbell, a Public Service Commission member, in his latest finance... more »
  • Senate takes aim at 'bots' that snap up concert seats

    November 30, 2016 8:00 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Senate is cracking down on computer software used by ticket brokers to snap up tickets to concerts and shows. Senators passed legislation by voice vote Wednesday that would make using the software an "unfair and deceptive practice" under the Federal Trade Commission Act and allow the FTC... more »
  • Democrat Campbell sees fundraising boost in Senate runoff

    November 30, 2016 10:22 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Foster Campbell's fundraising has spiked ahead of the Dec. 10 runoff, as his campaign is bolstered by Democratic donors from around the nation. Campbell had brought in $1.7 million for his campaign through Oct. 19 over nearly a year of fundraising - $984,000... more »
  • Kennedy skips Baton Rouge Senate forum Play Video

    November 28, 2016 6:25 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Republican John Kennedy was absent Monday from the Baton Rouge Press Club forum for U.S. Senate candidates. It's a move his rival Democrat Foster Campbell didn't let go unnoticed. "Mr. Kennedy doesn't want to debate," said Campbell. "He really doesn't want me to call him out on... more »
  • La. early voting opens Saturday, with Senate seat on ballot

    November 25, 2016 11:42 AM

    BATON ROUGE - The weeklong period for voters to cast early ballots in the Dec. 10 election opens Saturday, with a U.S. Senate seat, two U.S. House seats and dozens of municipal races remaining to be settled. Secretary of State Tom Schedler, Louisiana's top elections official, said lines should be... more »
  • Early voting for Dec. 10 runoffs begin Saturday

    November 23, 2016 3:19 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Early voting for the December 10 general elections begins this Saturday. Statewide early voting will be last for one week starting Saturday, Nov. 26 through Saturday, Dec. 3. According to the Louisisana Secretary of State's Office, residents can vote at the Registrar of Voters office in... more »
  • Attacks give way to endorsements in US Senate race

    November 20, 2016 7:06 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Those prostitution allegations? Forget about them. Claims of ties to a white supremacist? Ignore that. Trash-talking about performance in office? All water under the bridge. In Louisiana's U.S. Senate race, one-time rivals who hammered each other in bitter exchanges ahead of the primary election are now suggesting... more »
  • Marco Rubio wins 2nd term in the Senate

    November 8, 2016 8:31 PM

    WASHINGTON - Marco Rubio failed in his bid to end up in the White House, but he's still going back to Washington. Florida voters elected him to a second term in the Senate on Tuesday. He had wavered for months before deciding to run for re-election. He beat back a... more »
  • Kennedy, Campbell advance to December U.S. Senate runoff

    November 8, 2016 6:16 PM

    BATON ROUGE – A tight race for Louisiana's vacant U.S. Senate seat resulted in a runoff between State Treasurer John Kennedy and Democratic challenger Foster Campbell. Kennedy is a Republican and Campbell is a Democrat. Whoever is elected in December replaces U.S. Senator David Vitter, a Republican, who... more »
  • Struggle to break away from pack in Louisiana's Senate race

    November 5, 2016 3:41 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Contenders to be Louisiana's next U.S. senator are struggling to break away from the pack in a race where only a few percentage points could determine who reaches the runoff. Twenty-four candidates are on Tuesday's ballot. Five are possible contenders to make the Dec. 10 runoff. Among... more »
  • Protesters seek to block Duke's exit from campus Play Video

    November 2, 2016 11:42 PM

    NEW ORLEANS - The top six candidates running for Louisiana's soon-to-be-vacant U.S. Senate seat are meeting for their last debate ahead of next week's election, at Dillard University in New Orleans. But Wednesday's televised debate is drawing attention mainly for the sixth contender who will be on stage at the... more »
  • Dillard President says debate poll was rigged to include David Duke

    November 2, 2016 7:27 PM

    NEW ORLEANS – Dillard University's president took to Twitter to accuse Raycom Media of rigging poll results to increase TV ratings by including David Duke in Wednesday's U.S. Senate debate. President Walter Kimbrough tweeted “pretty clear polling rigged” for ratings and “any protests become part of reality show masquerading... more »
  • Senate race features prostitutes, David Duke, cross-dressing

    October 26, 2016 2:46 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana's U.S. Senate seat features an open seat, two dozen candidates, prostitution allegations and a white supremacist contender. About the only sure thing seems to be that the race won't be decided Nov. 8 when most of the nation's political contests are settled. Instead, it's certain to... more »
  • Exiting Sen. Vitter leaves guidebook for his successor

    October 23, 2016 2:53 PM

    BATON ROUGE - U.S. Sen. David Vitter is leaving a guidebook for the person who will follow him into office. The Republican incumbent, who isn't seeking re-election on the Nov. 8 ballot, sent major candidates in the Senate race the comprehensive, 102-page guidebook . The document includes information about how... more »
  • Louisiana's US Senate race candidates clash in TV debate

    October 18, 2016 11:10 PM

    RUSTON - Major candidates in Louisiana's U.S. Senate race clashed in their first televised debate together, as they sought to draw distinctions in the final weeks ahead of the Nov. 8 election. Republican U.S. Rep. John Fleming hit GOP opponent John Kennedy, the state treasurer, for running years ago as... more »
  • Former Sen. Mary Landrieu picks Fayard in La. Senate race

    October 14, 2016 4:05 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Caroline Fayard has received the backing of former U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu, as heavyweights in the party continue to split support between Fayard and Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell. Landrieu, a Democrat who lost her re-election bid in 2014, announced her endorsement... more »
  • Lawsuit highlights difficulties for lesser-known candidates

    October 14, 2016 10:41 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Three candidates trying to force their way into a TV debate in Louisiana's U.S. Senate race weren't successful. But their court hearing this week underscored the troubles for lesser-known contenders to gain the attention needed to win statewide. Judge Tim Kelley refused to stop the Oct. 18... more »
  • Fleming hits GOP opponents, says acting like in junior high

    September 29, 2016 2:39 PM

    BATON ROUGE - After lagging in polls, Republican U.S. Rep. John Fleming thinks he's found his path to the runoff in Louisiana's U.S. Senate race, positioning himself as the grown-up among the major GOP candidates. In his latest TV ad released statewide this week, Fleming hits the two leading Republicans... more »
  • Congress overrides Obama's veto of Sept. 11 bill

    September 28, 2016 12:38 PM

    WASHINGTON - Congress has rejected a veto by President Barack Obama for the first time since he became president. The House voted 348-77 Wednesday to override his veto of legislation and allow the families of Sept. 11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia for the kingdom's alleged backing of the attackers.... more »
  • Senate blocks stopgap bill to fund government

    September 27, 2016 8:28 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Senate has blocked a spending bill needed to keep the government open beyond Friday's midnight deadline. Most Democrats and at least 10 Republicans voted to block the bill, which also funds the fight against the Zika virus. Democrats are demanding money to help Flint, Michigan, address its... more »
  • New Orleans mayor backs Caroline Fayard in US Senate race

    September 12, 2016 8:44 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Democratic candidate Caroline Fayard has picked up the high-profile support of New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu in Louisiana's U.S. Senate race. Landrieu announced his backing of Fayard, a New Orleans lawyer and businesswoman, in a statement Monday that listed his endorsement in several races on the Nov.... more »
  • Senate panel opens inquiry into EpiPen pricing

    September 7, 2016 3:07 PM

    WASHINGTON - A Senate panel has opened a preliminary investigation into why the price of lifesaving EpiPens has skyrocketed. The top Republican and Democrat on the Senate Homeland's investigations subcommittee said in a statement Wednesday that they began an inquiry into Mylan Pharmaceuticals' pricing and competition practices. Mylan has been... more »
  • Ex-KKK leader Duke tries political comeback in US Senate run

    July 23, 2016 2:41 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A quarter century after his credible run for governor of Louisiana rattled the national political establishment, white supremacist David Duke has joined a wide open field seeking a U.S. Senate seat. On Friday, he declared "the climate of this country has moved in my direction," as he... more »
  • Ex-KKK leader Duke signs up to run for Senate

    July 22, 2016 11:54 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke has officially signed up to run for U.S. Senate in Louisiana. Duke registered Friday, the final day of Louisiana's qualifying period. A registered Republican, he is seeking an open seat vacated by Republican David Vitter. Duke's candidacy comes as Louisiana... more »
  • Senate blocks bill on barring money for sanctuary cities

    July 6, 2016 4:10 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Senate has blocked a measure that would bar federal funds from sanctuary cities, a contentious election-year vote on immigration. The vote was 53 to 44, shy of the 60 votes required to move to a final vote on the legislation. The bill would withhold some money from... more »
  • Senate spending plan protects colleges, cuts K-12 education

    June 22, 2016 2:54 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Louisiana's senators have unveiled their approach for spending $258 million raised in a tax special session that is in its final days. The plan, backed Wednesday by the Senate Finance Committee, would protect college campuses, but it leaves K-12 public schools on the chopping block. The safety-net hospitals... more »
  • House, Senate disagreement over budget bill ends

    June 16, 2016 3:52 PM

    BATON ROUGE - House and Senate leaders have reached a deal on how to handle the budget bill to spend the tax dollars raised during the special legislative session. After a Thursday meeting, House leaders agreed to stop stalling the bill and are scheduling it for a Monday hearing.... more »
  • Bill would lessen tax breaks for manufacturers

    June 15, 2016 2:39 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Senators are advancing a bill that would force large manufacturing facilities to choose between two property tax breaks they enjoy, to boost revenue for the state's budget. The bill by Republican Sen. Rick Ward, of Port Allen, would prohibit businesses from receiving both an exemption from paying... more »
  • Sales tax 'cleanup' bills to be delayed by Louisiana Senate

    June 13, 2016 2:09 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Senators intend to stall efforts to clean up sales taxes unintentionally charged on items like school lunches and Girl Scout cookies, until House lawmakers agree to more taxes for next year's budget than they've supported so far. Sales tax increases passed in the chaotic final moments... more »
  • Obama urges Senate to pass Puerto Rico aid bill quickly

    June 11, 2016 3:43 PM

    WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama is urging the Senate to swiftly send him a bill to help Puerto Rico manage its staggering debt crisis. In his weekly Saturday address, Obama says a pending bipartisan bill is not a perfect solution. But he says it's the only option to keep the... more »
  • Senate blocks former lawmaker tapped by Edwards for board

    June 8, 2016 11:12 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Former lawmaker Jeff Arnold won't be making decisions about property tax breaks for businesses on the state board that oversees such things, after senators refused to confirm him for the position. The Senate rejected seven appointments to boards and commissions made by Gov. John Bel Edwards,... more »
  • Second special session in full swing at the Capitol Play Video

    June 7, 2016 5:33 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The second session is in full swing at the Capitol as lawmakers are grappling with raising more taxes to close the budget deficit. Gov. John Bel Edwards addressed the Legislature Tuesday morning with News 2's Mark Armstrong getting the impression that his words fell on deaf... more »
  • Construction budget bill starts moving again in the House

    June 7, 2016 2:31 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Striking a conciliatory tone, House lawmakers started advancing a new multibillion-dollar construction budget after tanking the Senate's version in the waning minutes of the regular legislative session. Ways and Means Committee Chairman Neil Abramson was largely blamed for the House's refusal to pass the $4 billion budget... more »
  • Meet the legislative players preparing to tackle state's budget holes

    June 6, 2016 12:47 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Governor John Bel Edwards often says Louisiana is in the worst budget crisis of a generation facing the largest state deficit in all its history. Simply put, the state does not have enough money to pay for critical and popular services like hospitals and the TOPS college... more »
  • Lawmakers agree to relinquish tuition control

    June 5, 2016 5:54 PM

    BATON ROUGE - As they wind down their work in the regular session, lawmakers have agreed to give public college management boards the ability to raise their own tuition and fees without needing legislative approval. Voters would need to back the idea in the November election before legislative authority would... more »
  • House spurns Senate version of next year's $26B budget

    June 3, 2016 4:46 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Lawmakers in the Louisiana House have refused to agree to the Senate's rewrite of next year's $26 billion budget. Instead, the House voted 102-0 Friday to send negotiations over a spending plan for the financial year that begins July 1 behind closed doors, to a six-member... more »
  • Louisiana Senate votes to ban abortions based on abnormality

    June 2, 2016 5:34 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana Senators have agreed to a proposal aimed at prohibiting abortions performed because the fetus has a genetic abnormality, rejecting concerns such a ban would lead the state to a court battle it cannot win. Republican Sen. Dan Claitor usually votes for bills adding new restrictions... more »
  • Senate sends 'ban the box' bill to governor, who supports it

    May 25, 2016 6:16 PM

    BATON ROUGE - State agencies would be prohibited from asking job applicants about their criminal histories before interviewing them for a position, under a bill that has received final legislative passage. A 30-6 Senate vote Wednesday sent the "ban the box" bill to Gov. John Bel Edwards, who supports... more »
  • Senate gives final OK to patient caregiver bill

    May 25, 2016 4:40 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A proposal to give people more information about how to properly care for patients who are discharged from the hospital has received final legislative passage. The Senate sent the measure to the governor's desk with a 37-0 vote Wednesday. Gov. John Bel Edwards supports the bill and... more »
  • Religious objections bill rejected by La. Senate committee

    May 24, 2016 12:22 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana's state senators have refused to enact a new law declaring pastors and churches don't have to perform same-sex marriage ceremonies or allow them in their facilities. The Senate Judiciary B Committee voted 3-2 Tuesday to shelve the House-approved bill. Opponents of the proposal by... more »
  • Senate bill included amendment aiming to limit stripper weight

    May 18, 2016 5:39 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A Louisiana Senate bill intended to restrict the age of employees at strip clubs included a proposed amendment to limit employed strippers' weights. The amendment was with withdrawn before the House voted on the bill. The original text of Senate Bill 468 banned strip clubs... more »
  • Senators kill bill aimed at boosting student wellness exams

    May 18, 2016 5:11 PM

    BATON ROUGE - An attempt to boost wellness exams for public school students has failed to gain support in the state Senate. The House-approved bill by Rep. Walt Leger, a New Orleans Democrat, would have required the wellness exam before entering kindergarten and sixth grade - but would allow... more »
  • Charter school restriction headed to House floor for debate

    May 18, 2016 10:55 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Gov. John Bel Edwards' effort to remove an unused method for creating charter schools has passed its first hurdle in the House, after earlier winning Senate support. The House Education Committee voted 7-5 Tuesday to advance the bill to the House floor for debate, after previously rejecting... more »
  • Attorney general questioned as 'sanctuary city' bill delayed

    May 17, 2016 9:00 AM

    BATON ROUGE - A Senate committee has postponed a vote on a bid to penalize jurisdictions that don't align with federal immigration law, after some senators questioned whether the proposal gives the attorney general too much power. Attorney General Jeff Landry testified in favor of the House-approved bill that... more »
  • Anti-discrimination bill narrowly advances to Senate debate

    May 10, 2016 2:49 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A New Orleans senator's proposal seeking to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity or disability has narrowly passed its first test. Democratic Sen. J.P. Morrell's bill would rework Louisiana's existing anti-discrimination laws and broaden them to cover LGBT groups and people with disabilities. ... more »
  • Electronic driver's license bill moves to Senate for hearing

    May 4, 2016 9:25 AM

    BATON ROUGE - State senators will consider whether Louisiana drivers should be permitted to carry electronic licenses, after the proposal met little resistance from the full House. Rep. Ted James, a Baton Rouge Democrat, said people could only use the licenses for driving and not for identification at private... more »
  • Minimum wage increase stalled as negotiations continue

    May 2, 2016 1:28 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Gov. John Bel Edwards' push to boost Louisiana's minimum wage remains stalled in the Senate as the Democratic governor continues negotiating with lawmakers, trying to win support for the bill. The proposal to raise the minimum wage to $8.50 an hour, sponsored by New Orleans Sen.... more »
  • Students invade Capitol for 'Take our Daughters and Sons to Work Day'

    April 29, 2016 7:39 PM

    BATON ROUGE – Lawmakers took the day off Friday, so students, along with their parents and teachers, took over the Louisiana State Capitol building. It was all part of a new event that Governor John Bel Edwards called, “Take our Daughters and Sons to Work Day.” And that is... more »
  • Senate passes cursive writing mandate for public schools

    April 28, 2016 4:23 AM

    BATON ROUGE, La. - With rallying cries of what it means to be American, Louisiana senators unanimously passed a bill requiring Louisiana's public schools to teach cursive writing. The 37-0 Senate vote Wednesday moved the measure to the House for consideration. Sen. Beth Mizell, a Franklinton Republican, described cursive as... more »
  • Lawmakers looking to make video poker for truck stops easier Play Video

    April 26, 2016 8:11 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Lawmakers are proposing to make it easier for truck stops to do business. For a truck stop to have video poker, it matters how much fuel it sells. It is the responsibility of the truck stop to keep an eye on their fuel sales and report them, however... more »
  • Bill aims to cut meeting costs that reach thousands annually

    April 26, 2016 3:07 PM

    BATON ROUGE - State senators are trying to trim the costs of a legislative agency that spends thousands of dollars each year on meetings at a swanky New Orleans hotel. The Louisiana State Law Institute, which studies legal issues for the Legislature, regularly holds meetings of its decision-making council... more »
  • La. Senate advances bill to allow separate courtroom seating

    April 26, 2016 11:27 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana's Senate has approved a proposal allowing crime victims, crime witnesses or their family members to request courtroom seating separate from defendants, defendants' family members or defense witnesses. Sen. J.P. Morell, a New Orleans Democrat, says his bill is meant to protect the people "most vulnerable to... more »
  • Cursive writing requirement heads to full Senate for debate

    April 21, 2016 3:15 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana's public schools would have to teach cursive writing, if lawmakers agree to a bill advancing in the state Senate. Sen. Beth Mizell, a Franklinton Republican, says she's worried students are spending too much time on keyboards and are losing their own signatures. She says the bill... more »
  • Pro-Kennedy PAC has less than expected in campaign account

    April 21, 2016 5:54 AM

    BATON ROUGE- A super PAC supporting state Treasurer John Kennedy in Louisiana's U.S. Senate race has missed the fundraising mark it expected to reach. Make Louisiana Proud PAC had previously announced that it expected to have more than $2.3 million in the bank to bolster Kennedy's candidacy for the fundraising... more »
  • Medical marijuana proposal wins Senate support

    April 20, 2016 5:51 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A day after falling one vote short, backers of a proposal to expand Louisiana's medical marijuana law to cover more diseases found success in the Senate. Senators voted 21-16 Wednesday for the proposal from Republican Sen. Fred Mills. It needed 20 votes to pass. Louisiana hasn't yet... more »
  • Bill limiting access to police body camera video stalled

    April 19, 2016 1:12 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A proposal to exempt all police body camera footage unrelated to criminal investigations from Louisiana public records law has stalled in the state Senate, at least temporarily. Lake Charles Sen. Ronnie Johns, a Republican, says he plans to continue discussions on the measure and bring a reworked... more »
  • Senate backs bill allowing raw milk sales in Louisiana

    April 19, 2016 1:08 PM

    BATON ROUGE - If one lawmaker has his way, Louisianians will learn to trust local farmers to milk cows and sell the product "raw." Sen. Eric LaFleur, a Ville Platte Democrat, persuaded the Senate to let farmers sell limited quantities of unpasteurized milk directly to consumers, with an argument of... more »
  • Push to restrict charter schools hits legislative resistance

    April 15, 2016 5:37 AM

    BATON ROUGE- The push to curb the growth of charter schools has taken hits in the Louisiana Legislature. The Senate Education Committee, without objection, agreed Thursday to shelve legislation that would ban Louisiana's top school board from authorizing charter schools rejected by local boards in most districts. The vote is... more »
  • Senate backs bill letting police automatically scan plates

    April 14, 2016 7:45 AM

    BATON ROUGE- A Lake Charles senator is back with his proposal to allow law enforcement agencies to automatically scan motorists' license plates. Former Gov. Bobby Jindal vetoed the bill last year, so Republican Sen. Ronnie Johns asked senators to try again this year now that Gov. John Bel Edwards is... more »
  • Proposal to double seatbelt fine passes Louisiana House

    April 14, 2016 4:38 AM

    BATON ROUGE- The Louisiana House has backed a proposal to double fines against people caught not wearing seatbelts. Rep. Walt Leger, a New Orleans Democrat, says his bill to increase the fine from $25 to $50 will generate more money for the state and save lives. Drivers would pay $75... more »
  • Raw milk sales bill narrowly gains traction in La. Senate

    April 13, 2016 2:43 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The Louisiana Senate will debate whether the state should lift its ban on sales of unpasteurized - or "raw" - milk. After two years of rejecting the bill, a reorganized Senate Health and Welfare Committee voted 3-2 to advance to the full Senate for consideration a proposal... more »
  • Treasurer Kennedy announces $800K raised for US Senate race

    April 6, 2016 5:32 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Republican Treasurer John Kennedy says he has raised more than $800,000 for his U.S. Senate campaign. Kennedy's campaign announced the fundraising figure Wednesday, more than a week before reports for the quarter ending March 31 are due to the Federal Election Commission. The state treasurer's campaign says... more »
  • GOP Congress' incomplete: Stalled bills, no court nominee

    April 3, 2016 2:56 PM

    WASHINGTON - Congress increasingly is being defined by what it's not doing this election year. The Senate returns this week with a strong majority of Republicans saying no to any consideration of President Barack Obama's nominee to the Supreme Court. No hearings, no vote and, for some lawmakers, not even... more »
  • Edwards tells Democrats he's supporting Campbell for Senate

    April 2, 2016 2:55 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards has told state Democratic Party leaders he's backing Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell in the U.S. Senate race. The governor's endorsement of the utility regulator from Bossier Parish was a blow to the campaign of Caroline Fayard, a New Orleans lawyer from... more »
  • Senate agrees to ban sex offenders from door-to-door sales

    March 31, 2016 5:37 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Convicted sex offenders in Louisiana would be unable to work in door-to-door sales, if the state House of Representatives agrees to a measure that won unanimous support from the Senate. Already in Louisiana, registered sex offenders can't drive a bus or taxi or work in an industry... more »
  • Senators refuse to change Louisiana's absentee voting rules

    March 30, 2016 5:47 AM

    BATON ROUGE- Senators have refused to loosen Louisiana's absentee voting rules. Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, a New Orleans Democrat, proposed to allow any people who expect to be away from their home parishes on Election Day to be able to vote absentee by mail. Currently, people can only vote absentee... more »
  • Louisiana House votes to curb state spending on public art

    March 29, 2016 4:28 AM

    BATON ROUGE- The Louisiana House wants to scale back a 17-year-old program that requires state agencies to spend a portion of their construction dollars on public art. Lawmakers in the House voted 86-4 on Monday to put new restrictions on the program, with supporters saying the state has to curb... more »
  • Special session ends: A breakdown of what passed in final hours Play Video

    March 9, 2016 7:14 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana’s lawmakers wrapped up a special legislative session Wednesday night at 6 p.m. aimed at balancing this year’s budget. Decisions on several tax proposals that could help get the state treasury back in decent shape went down to the wire as the debate ended in a flurry... more »
  • Critical bills up for consideration as session deadline closes in

    March 9, 2016 12:18 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Wednesday marks the final day of the special legislative session, and it’s time for state lawmakers to agree to a tax plan or let critical services get cut. Lawmakers are meeting now behind closed doors, and a number of conference committees are hard at work on... more »
  • Senators blast business for seeking to protect tax breaks

    March 8, 2016 1:33 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Senators grilled business lobbyists on the second-to-last day of the special legislative session, saying companies aren't doing their fair share to help close Louisiana's budget gap. Lobbyists for the oil and gas industry, chemical plants and other companies urged the Senate tax committee Tuesday against shrinking sales... more »
  • Senators outline budget balancing plan, calls for more taxes

    March 3, 2016 2:14 PM

    BATON ROUGE - State senators have unveiled their plan to rebalance Louisiana's short-term budget gap, seeking to lessen cuts proposed by the House and largely shield public colleges and health services from steep reductions. But the plan requires the House to back $83 million more in taxes than the... more »
  • Who could pay? A look at tax bills advancing with lawmakers

    March 3, 2016 11:18 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Lawmakers in the House and Senate have supported varying measures to change Louisiana's tax laws. None has made it to final passage so far, with less than a week remaining in the special legislative session. Here's a look of what some of the proposals would do and... more »
  • Senate rejects adding $600M to anti-heroin legislation

    March 2, 2016 4:29 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Senate has rejected a Democratic effort to add $600 million to a bipartisan bill targeting heroin and opioid abuse. Supporters of the immediate funding won a majority of the Senate votes. But the 48-47 tally fell short of the 60 votes required for New Hampshire Democrat Jeanne... more »
  • Another Republican is joining the U.S. Senate race in Louisiana

    March 1, 2016 6:48 PM

    NEW ORLEANS - Another Republican is joining the U.S. Senate race in Louisiana. Former U.S. Rep. Joseph Cao announced his candidacy Tuesday in a news release. Cao became the nation's first Vietnamese-American congressman with his unexpected defeated of a scandal-plagued incumbent Democrat, William Jefferson, in 2008. Two years... more »
  • House and Senate appear in stalemate over budget rebalancing

    March 1, 2016 6:18 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Negotiations over how best to rebalance Louisiana's budget are staying behind the scenes. Lawmakers in the House on Tuesday again stalled votes on tax hikes, as bill sponsors tried to rally enough support for passage. House Speaker Taylor Barras, a Republican, called on lawmakers in his... more »
  • Education chief: House cuts would shutter most of agency

    February 29, 2016 10:04 AM

    BATON ROUGE- The Louisiana House is proposing to take a hatchet to the Department of Education in the final four months of the budget year. House lawmakers recommended cuts that Superintendent of Education John White says would shutter nearly every program in his agency, including early childhood programs, vouchers and... more »
  • House to debate governor's tax plans to rebalance budget

    February 25, 2016 10:06 AM

    BATON ROUGE- State House lawmakers are weighing whether to boost taxes on shoppers, smokers, drinkers, phone service and more as they try to end the boom-and-bust cycles of Louisiana's budget. After days of closed-door negotiations, the House on Thursday is scheduled to debate more than 30 tax proposals aimed at... more »
  • Senate confirms Robert Califf as head of FDA

    February 24, 2016 12:51 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Senate has confirmed President Barack Obama's nominee to be commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration. Senators voted 89-4 Wednesday to confirm Robert Califf after a handful of Democrats delayed action in a protest over the agency's inaction on the abuse of opioid painkillers. Califf... more »
  • Jeb Bush: Senate court vote 'not important' to him

    February 14, 2016 3:38 PM

    WASHINGTON - Jeb Bush says it doesn't matter to him whether Senate Republicans vote on any Supreme Court nominee President Barack Obama may send to Capitol Hill to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia. Bush tells CNN's "State of the Union" that the decision is up to Majority Leader Mitch... more »
  • Senate panel votes to hold website in contempt over sex ads

    February 10, 2016 4:14 PM

    WASHINGTON - A Senate panel has voted to hold the classified advertising website Backpage.com in civil contempt for failing to comply with a congressional subpoena into how it screens ads for possible sex trafficking. The Senate Homeland and Governmental Affairs Committee on Wednesday backed a resolution setting up a... more »

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