(INDIANAPOLIS) – Legislators will reach the halfway point of this year’s session next week, in a session that’s been relatively free of controversy.
Tempers flared Thursday in the House, with both parties accusing each other of bad faith on a health-care bill and a teenage marriage bill. Both bills ended up yanked from the calendar, one because of an amendment that was introduced and the other because an amendment unexpectedly passed. House Speaker Brian Bosma suggested Republicans were misled when they approved an amendment allowing Indiana to import prescription drugs. Evansville Democrat Ryan Hatfield shot back that he was crystal clear about what his amendment would do, and accused Bosma of lying.
But most of the session has produced little drama, even on bills which seemed likely to be contentious. There were just 10 votes against a ban on using your phone while driving. And the repeal of a requirement that ILEARN scores be included in teacher evaluations passed unanimously.
Bosma says the issues on this year’s docket aren’t that controversial. He says Governor Holcomb and Republicans and Democrats in both chambers all agree on transparency in health care costs, job creation, and a mulligan for teachers and schools for the results of ILEARN’s first year.
Monday is the final day for the House to approve its own bills — it has 21 left to vote on. Monday is also the deadline for the Senate to bring bills to the floor for amendment, with a deadline for a final vote the following day. It has 62 bills lined up. After Tuesday, the House will begin considering the Senate’s bills and vice versa.
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