Politics

Politics
11:50 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Indiana Lawmakers Digging In For 2013 Session

Indiana's General Assembly is reconvening for a 2013 session certain to be jammed with debate over the budget, taxes and a raft of divisive social issues.

Lawmakers return to Indianapolis today for the start of their four-month session that will also feature dozens of new faces, including Gov.-elect Mike Pence and his new administration. Pence takes office Jan. 14.

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Politics
10:56 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Poll Shows Increased Support for Statewide Smoking Ban

Credit Creative Commons

The majority of Kentuckians — 59 percent — support a statewide smoking ban, says a poll conducted by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky.

Last year, the poll said for the first time that most Kentuckians supported banning smoking in  public establishments. 

This year, fewer than  38 percent of Kentuckians opposed such a ban. The rest had no opinion.

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Politics
10:30 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Mayor Fischer Moves State of the City Address to West Louisville

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer
Credit File photo

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer announced Monday he will deliver this year’s State of the City address at the Kentucky Center for African-American Heritage in the Russell neighborhood.

The speech is scheduled for January 24 and is traditionally delivered before the Rotary Club in downtown. According to the mayor's office, Fischer wants to move the address to different parts of the city each year and the Rotary accepted the suggestion to move it to west Louisville.

"The annual speech is about the state of the entire city, so it’s only natural that it’s delivered in different areas of our great city," Fischer said in a news release.

The mayor also asked the group to open the event up to the public.

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Politics
8:30 am
Mon January 7, 2013

Senator Joe Donnelly Wants Consensus on Filibuster Reform

Joe Donnelly
Credit U.S. Senate

U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., says even though the filibuster has been abused in recent years, his party should seek a consensus with Republicans before changing the chamber's rules.

Critics have complained that the filibuster is too often used to block important votes. Since 2007, the GOP has used the parliamentary tactic to block legislation and nominees an unprecedented 386 times.

In the last weeks of 2012, Democratic Leader Harry Reid and Republican Leader Mitch McConnell jousted over whether to restrict filibusters.

Donnelly says the negotiations to address the dysfunction should continue, and that Reid should find a general agreement with the GOP.

"He will be talking with our Republican friends over the next week or two to try to see if there is a consensus that can form, and I am hopeful that can happen," he says.

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Politics
1:04 pm
Sun January 6, 2013

Noise and Notes: Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Previewing The 2013 General Assembly

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer
Credit File photo

Mayor Greg Fischer is halfway through his first term in office, and he is marking the mid-term by highlighting job creation and making Louisville a more compassionate city.

Despite his optimism and business acumen, much of Fischer’s tenure has been gobbled up dealing with "cleaning house" at different departments, auditing city services and steep budget deficits.

Then there is the surge in homicides, which increased by 28 percent in 2012.

The mayor's task force issued a report that says there’s a need for violence prevention director and other serious intervention from Metro Government on a number of fronts. But some Metro Council members have question if that's the best use of city resources and many residents are taking a "wait and see" approach.

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Politics
8:00 am
Sun January 6, 2013

Tea Party Plans Anti-Obamacare Rally to Mark Kentucky Legislative Session Opening

Credit Wikipedia Commons

Before the first gavel is hit the start the 2013 legislative session in Kentucky, Tea Party activists plan to rally in the Capitol Rotunda against the federal Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.

It’s the second capital rally against the health care law, which Kentucky has actively worked to implement by executive order from Governor Steve Beshear.

Rally organizer and activist David Adams says the goal of the rally is to convince lawmakers to pass a law overturning Beshear’s order and the health exchange in Kentucky.

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Politics
7:00 am
Sat January 5, 2013

Kentucky Lawmakers Still Working on New Liquor Law

Credit Gabe Bullard/WFPL

Kentucky legislators are still seeking a new state liquor law, a leading lawmaker says.  If they don't, a bottle of bourbon may be as close as the corner gas station.

Last year, a federal judge threw out Kentucky laws that don’t allow groceries and gas stations to sell wine or hard spirits, saying it was unfair. Kentucky pharmacies — which often sell grocery items — can sell the hard stuff.

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Politics
6:00 pm
Fri January 4, 2013

Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell Goes for Hat Trick With Sunday Political Talk Shows

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell
Credit File photo

In the wake of helping to avert the fiscal cliff, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is making the rounds on three of the top Sunday political talk shows this weekend.

The GOP leader will be on ABC’s "This Week with George Stephanopolous," CBS’s “Face the Nation,” and NBC’s “Meet the Press.” He is expected to discuss the agreement he made with Vice President Joe Biden, which passed both chambers of Congress earlier this week.

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Politics
4:56 pm
Fri January 4, 2013

Congressman Thomas Massie Files Bill to Repeal Gun Free Zones in Schools

Congressman Thomas Massie, R-Ky.,
Credit U.S. Congress

Kentucky Fourth District Congressman Thomas Massie introduced his first bill in Congress on Friday that would repeal the federal ban on guns in school zones. 

The measure is dubbed the Citizens Protection Act of 2013, which was initially proposed by former Congressman Ron Paul six years ago. It would repeal the Gun Free School Zones Act of 1990 and comes in the midst of the gun control debate sparked by the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre in Connecticut.

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Politics
5:30 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

Senator Dan Coats Receives Committee Assignments for 113th Congress

Calling for lawmakers to rise above partisan politics, U.S. Sen. Dan Coats, R-Ind., announced Thursday he has been selected to serve on a number of key Senate committees in the 113th Congress.

Now the Hoosier state's senior senator, Coats will serve on the Appropriations, Select Intelligence, Commerce, Science, and Transportation panels, as well as the Joint Economic Committee.

"These important committee assignments will allow me the opportunity to continue the fight to rein in out-of-control government spending and strengthen our economic and national security," Coats said in a news release. "At a time when the greatest challenge facing our nation is excessive spending, I look forward to working on efforts to restore our fiscal health through my new role as the ranking Republican member of the Joint Economic Committee."

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