Statehouse Dispatch

FEIGENBAUM: Governor focuses on the big issues, just as Reagan did

February 12, 2011
Ed Feigenbaum
That “think big” attitude seems to be carrying over to lawmakers, who this month focused on major issues.
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FEIGENBAUM: Unemployment insurance bill's path surprisingly smooth

February 5, 2011
Ed Feigenbaum
Once in a legislative blue moon, a bill will zip through the labyrinthine process with alacrity.
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FEIGENBAUM: Lawmakers wrestle with when and how to regulate

January 29, 2011
Ed Feigenbaum
What may be appropriate regulatory reform to one person or industry may be anathema to another.
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FEIGENBAUM: Daniels experiences pushback even from Republicans

January 22, 2011
Ed Feigenbaum
Assorted issues advanced by Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels are confronting political pushback—from his Republican legislative majority.
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FEIGENBAUM: Right-to-work debate could create sparks in Legislature

January 15, 2011
Ed Feigenbaum
The bulk of legislative Democrats, allied with organized labor, are vehemently opposed to having Indiana join almost two dozen other states with right-to-work laws, labeling them as discriminatory against minorities and women, and contending that such laws will do little more than reduce wages and lower the living standards of many Hoosiers.
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FEIGENBAUM: Here's what to expect from State of the State Address

January 8, 2011
Ed Feigenbaum
State of the State Address can help outline priorities for a given session, and governors have used them to dramatically draw a line in the proverbial sand, directly delivering a message to the individual members and leaders of the legislative branch—and over their heads to the voters—as to what they expect, will tolerate, and hope for.
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FEIGENBAUM: Session to test lawmakers' views on small government

January 1, 2011
Ed Feigenbaum
Many new House and Senate members won election in part on platforms of reducing government regulation and minimizing government in the lives of Hoosiers.
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FEIGENBAUM: Short session succeeded in doing no harmRestricted Content

March 20, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
The 2010 legislative session ended strangely: ahead of deadline, yet a week beyond the expected schedule, and the last full day saw more mood swings among lawmakers than Indianapolis Colts fans experienced during the Super Bowl.
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FEIGENBAUM: Legislature heads toward bumpy conclusionRestricted Content

March 13, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
OK, I admit that I’m still wincing about last week’s column about a peaceful, easy feeling in the General Assembly as it approached the leadership-targeted early-adjournment date.
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FEIGENBAUM: Session heads toward early, quiet completion

March 6, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
The buzz as the days ran out suggested that nothing on the agenda was “must-pass” legislation, leaving Democrats and Republicans, the House and the Senate, and the governor and the General Assembly with little leverage to exert.
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FEIGENBAUM: Don't expect fireworks in session's grand finaleRestricted Content

February 27, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
Lawmakers head into one of their briefest periods of conference committee deliberations in recent years with just a handful of major issues needing resolution.
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FEIGENBAUM: Sen. Bayh's call for civility reverberates at StatehouseRestricted Content

February 20, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
In the most significant retirement decision announced in Indiana since Reggie Miller hung up his sneakers, Democratic U.S. Sen. Evan Bayh said Dec. 15 he would not seek a third U.S. Senate term. That decision also sent shock waves through the ranks of Democratic lawmakers in Indianapolis, none of whom had any advance word.
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FEIGENBAUM: Remainder of legislative session will be all about jobsRestricted Content

February 13, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
House Democrats now have their opportunity to tinker with legislation sent to them by the Senate, and they will look for every opportunity to use these miscellaneous bills to preserve and create jobs. Similarly, Senate Republicans will analyze each piece of legislation that crossed the Statehouse Rotunda from the House to determine whether it is a “job-killer.”
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FEIGENBAUM: Legislature's second half will have its share of dramaRestricted Content

February 6, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
Perhaps it was serendipity that the midpoint of the 2009 legislative session fell just ahead of the Indianapolis Colts’ Super Bowl appearance.
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FEIGENBAUM: Debate rages over the right to bear arms

January 30, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
House Bill 1065 would bar business owners from prohibiting an employee from keeping a legally owned firearm in his or her locked vehicle at work.
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FEIGENBAUM: Daniels' agenda built on avoiding new taxes, programs

January 23, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
The State of the State address delivered by Gov. Mitch Daniels Jan. 19 contained no surprises at all, except, perhaps in his optimism.
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FEIGENBAUM: Bills flying through Legislature at Castroneves' paceRestricted Content

January 16, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
At a torrid pace, major pieces of legislation are flying through the Indiana General Assembly, leaving lawmakers with an envious decision: Adjourn early and make Hoosier voters happy, or stick around and devote attention to other major issues that deserve close scrutiny, but receive short shrift in sessions bogged down by battles over high-profile partisan matters.
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FEIGENBAUM: Democrats start to embrace constitutional amendmentRestricted Content

January 9, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
What changed over the last year to make House Democrats so eager to allow Hoosier voters to amend the property-tax caps into the Indiana Constitution? The calendar.
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FEIGENBAUM: Early committee hearings were mostly theaterRestricted Content

January 2, 2010
Ed Feigenbaum
The December hearings by Indiana General Assembly committees focused on issues that legislative leaders designated as key session priorities, but the committee work was largely unremarkable, with predictable testimony derived from the usual suspects.
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FEIGENBAUM: Historic milestone in gambling industry approachesRestricted Content

July 27, 2009
Ed Feigenbaum
Indiana has made billions on gambling in nearly two decades, funding key programs, cutting excise and property taxes, and avoiding tax hikes. The state has seen more than $2 billion in investment without any government incentives, and more dollars committed in our history than by any industry outside of steel, power and autos.
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FEIGENBAUM: Education money helped land key Democratic votesRestricted Content

July 6, 2009
Ed Feigenbaum
As both House Speaker Pat Bauer, D-South Bend, and House Republican Leader Brian Bosma, R-Indianapolis, see it, this is definitely a "Republican-flavored" budget. Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels laid the framework, and legislators from both sides of the aisle largely abided by his bottom lines of spending, state agency cuts and surplus.
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FEIGENBAUM: History suggests legislators finally will settle on budgetRestricted Content

June 29, 2009
Ed Feigenbaum
The sniping over the state budget follows the time-honored script of partisan politics. Fear not: A timely climax and resolution are all but guaranteed.
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STATEHOUSE DISPATCH: Political posturing puts session on strange trajectoryRestricted Content

June 22, 2009
Ed FeigenbaumMore

FEIGENBAUM: Problems pile up as legislators get back to workRestricted Content

June 15, 2009
Ed Feigenbaum
Special session will be longer than all had hoped before because of multiple unresolved issues
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FEIGENBAUM: Let the state budget bickering begin againRestricted Content

June 8, 2009
Ed Feigenbaum
Lawmakers return to Indianapolis June 11 tanned, rested and presumably ready to agree upon a budget that, via gubernatorial assent or a veto override vote, will guide Indiana through fiscal 2010-2011.
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