state senate

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Lawmaker's Residence Under Scrutiny for Airbnb Ad

Frank Lasee stays in 2 different places

(Newser) - If Frank Lasee ran for office using his wife's house as his primary residence, he'd have to run against incumbent Paul Ryan—which the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says would be "political suicide." Instead, the GOP state senator looking to fill a soon-to-be-vacant congressional seat says he... More »

Florida Lawmakers to Live on $17 a Day

But only for a week as part of 'Minimum Wage Challenge'

(Newser) - At least 18 Florida lawmakers say they'll take the "Minimum Wage Challenge" this week to show the need for a minimum wage hike to $15 an hour. From Monday to Friday, each of the lawmakers, who are mostly Democrats, will live on just $17 a day—the remains... More »

Teens in Florida Illegally Set to Pay In-State Tuition

Gov. Rick Scott expected to sign bill when it clears House

(Newser) - Florida is on track to become the 20th US state to offer students who are in the country illegally the same in-state college tuition rates as citizens. The state Senate yesterday voted 26-13 in favor of a bill that would save undocumented youth the burden of paying out-of-state fees—typically... More »

Hawaii State Senate Backs Gay Marriage

Bill heads to state House

(Newser) - In a 20-4 vote, Hawaii's state Senate has passed a bill to allow gay marriage; the bill now heads to the state House of Representatives, where the vote could be closer, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser notes. That chamber is also likely to amend the Senate's version of the bill,... More »

California Senate Backs 'Anti-Arizona' Bill

Measure would limit deportation after minor crimes

(Newser) - California's Senate has passed a measure that runs counter to federal immigration efforts—one that's been dubbed the "anti-Arizona" bill, Reuters reports. The legislation, which looks set to pass the state Assembly, would hamper police's ability to hand an arrested person over to immigration officials for... More »

Oklahoma Senate Passes 'Personhood' Act

Says life begins at conception, but supporters say it doesn't ban abortion

(Newser) - The Oklahoma Senate has passed a controversial bill that declares that life begins at the moment of conception, in a landslide 34-8 vote. The Personhood Act passed yesterday after two hours of debate. It's unclear what effect the bill will have, however; its author says it's just a... More »

NJ Senate Passes Gay Marriage Bill

But Gov. Chris Christie likely to veto it

(Newser) - New Jersey's state Senate passed a gay marriage bill today, but by a margin too slim to overturn the governor's expected veto, the New Jersey Star-Ledger reports. Senators voted 24-16, with two Republicans in favor. "We have some among us who are separate and not equal,"... More »

Control of Virginia's Senate Too Close to Call

Just 86 votes separate Republican and Democrat

(Newser) - Republicans appear poised to take over the Virginia state Senate—by a mere 86 votes. Heading into last night’s election, the Democrats had a 22-18 majority in the chamber, but they lost one seat in a strange race that, thanks to redistricting, pitted two incumbents, one Republican and one... More »

Dems Survive Wisconsin Recall

Runaway lawmakers keep seats; GOP keeps state senate

(Newser) - Two more Democratic state senators have survived recall votes in Wisconsin, ending the state's recall saga with the Republicans still in charge of the legislature—but with only a one-seat majority. Another Democrat survived an earlier recall vote, and four of six targeted Republicans held their seats after recall... More »

Carl Lewis Can't Run for New Jersey State Senate

He will appeal decision that he doesn't meet residency requirements

(Newser) - New Jersey won't let a favorite son run for state office. The lieutenant governor ruled today that Carl Lewis, who has nine Olympic gold medals on his mantle, doesn't meet the four-year residency requirement to run for a state Senate seat, reports the Star-Ledger . The 49-year-old Lewis plans... More »

'Don't Say Gay' Education Bill Advances in Tennessee

Teachers can't talk about homosexuality before high school under bill

(Newser) - A Tennessee state Senate committee has passed a bill to make sure teachers don't mention homosexuality in classes below ninth grade, the Knoxville News Sentinel reports. The Republican sponsor of the so-called “don’t say gay” bill got it passed 6-3 after some legal wrangling, and it now... More »

California Bill Would Require Gay History in Schools

Would be first state to launch mandate

(Newser) - California could be the first state to require that schools teach gay history. Lessons on gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people would be added to social studies classes under a landmark bill passed yesterday by the state Senate, the AP reports. The state Assembly and Gov. Jerry Brown must approve... More »

AWOL Dems: We're Not Coming Home

Fleeing Wisconsin senators deny recent reports that they will return

(Newser) - Some Wisconsin Democrats recently seemed to imply they will return to the state even though talks with Gov. Scott Walker have broken down—but now they're now backtracking on those reports. Minority Leader Mark Miller told the Wall Street Journal the senators were considering a return as soon as certain... More »

Georgia Lawmaker Likens GOP to KKK, Then Womanizers

Comments about 'white sheets' stir things up

(Newser) - A Georgia state senator has thrown down against his political rivals, comparing turncoat Democrats to Ku Klux Klan members, Mediaite reports. State Senator Robert Brown, lashing out against his former Dems who'd switched over to the GOP after Republicans made big gains in the election, said that they "put... More »

Palin Pick Parrots Obama

Congressional hopeful rips off 2004 DNC speech

(Newser) - A congressional candidate from Idaho has the backing of Sarah Palin but a taste for the rhetoric of Barack Obama. A fellow Idaho Republican—not even an opponent, but a candidate for state senate—has released an attack ad contrasting Vaughn Ward's announcement of his candidacy with then-state senator Obama's... More »

State Lawmaker Views Porn on Senate Floor

For like 2 seconds, but still

(Newser) - Legislative sessions are really boring affairs, so who could blame state Sen. Mike Bennett of Florida if, during an abortion debate, he decided to sneak a peak at some naked ta-tas? In this video, Sunshine State News catches Bennett doing just that, while another senator drones, “I'm against this... More »

Calif. Senate Gay Rights Foe Comes Out of Closet

Roy Ashburn admits he's gay after DUI arrest, media frenzy

(Newser) - Republican Roy Ashburn has capped a career battling gay rights in the California State Senate by coming out of the closet. "I am gay. Those are the words that have been so difficult for me for so long," Ashburn told a conservative radio host, addressing rumors that he... More »

Paterson Names Lt. Gov to Break NY Senate Standoff

GOP gets court order suspending move

(Newser) - In a desperate play to break the weeks-long deadlock in the New York State Senate, David Paterson last night named a lieutenant governor, who could preside over the hamstrung body and cast tie-breaking votes. But Republicans say they’ve obtained a court order suspending the beleaguered governor's appointment. Richard Ravitch,... More »

Feuding Senate Has NY State Seeing Double

'Farcical' legislators make mayhem; gov blasts proceedings

(Newser) - New York got two state senates for the price of one yesterday as lawmakers held side-by-side sessions, with each party passing its own bills, the New York Times reports. Dems got to the chamber first and locked out Republicans. When the GOP was finally allowed in, members were barred from... More »

Wandering Gov. Sanford of SC Returning to Work

(Newser) - South Carolina's AWOL governor is expected to be back at work tomorrow, the State reports. Mark Sanford has been incommunicado for several days, save for a fleeting cell phone signal picked up near Atlanta. Aides say he's been hiking on the Appalachian Trail, though his political opponents are skeptical. "... More »

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