Politics

Political news

Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels is once again brushing aside efforts by some to get him to enter the Republican Presidential contest. The online political journal Politico reports that some in the Republican Party are growing so concerned about the nominating process and the current crop of candidates that they’re looking for a late-entry nominee.

Indiana Republican Party Chairman Eric Holcomb is quoted by Politico as saying “the whispers have becomes shouts” and that the knocks on Daniels’ door “have become fist pounding.”

A freshman lawmaker from Louisville has filed a bill in the Kentucky General Assembly that limits how long members can serve.  Legislation by State Representative Mike Nemes limits House and Senate lawmakers to serving no more that three consecutive terms.

A bill that would allow Kentucky to collect money from Medicaid fraud busts has again been introduced in Frankfort. House Speaker Greg Stumbo filed the bill, which would also protect and possibly reward whistle blowers who report fraud in Medicaid or any other areas of state government.

A bill allowing Amish buggy drivers in Kentucky to use reflective tape instead of a state-mandated orange triangle is only a few steps away from becoming law.

The state Senate passed a bill addressing the issue weeks ago. And a House committee passed its own version last week.

There are a few differences in each chamber’s bill. The House wants 200 inches of white, two-inch-wide tape on the back of each buggy. The Senate version mandates 100 inches of red or white one-inch-wide tape.

The Kentucky Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the legislative redistricting case this week. Chief Justice John D. Minton filed an order Friday officially accepting transfer of the case from the Kentucky Court of Appeals.

Governor Beshear says he’s willing to make changes to his proposed casino gambling amendment in response to complaints from lawmakers. The plan unveiled by Beshear this week would allow up to five casinos at horseracing tracks, and two freestanding casinos in other parts of the state.

A Senate bill that would give county governments more control over constables could have enough support to become law. Originally, both chambers pursued constitutional amendments to eliminate the office of constable altogether, spurred by several recent instances of constables abusing their power.

But an agreement not to crowd the fall ballot with constitutional amendments led to the Senate proposal.

House Speaker Pro Tempore Larry Clark says now that the bill’s scope has changed, it has a good chance of making it through the House.

A bill that would make pseudoephedrine available by prescription only in Kentucky has cleared its first legislative hurdle. PSE is commonly found in cold medicines and is also used to make meth.

Kentucky Senate President David Williams has several criticisms for Governor Steve Beshear's recently-appointed tax commission.

Williams proposed creating such a commission during his bid for governor last year. But says Beshear’s commission lacks the guidance and experience to change Kentucky’s tax code. The Senate President says the majority of the commission is made up of Beshear’s friends and political allies.

The Kentucky state senate's health and welfare committee will hear more testimony Wednesday morning as representatives from Medicaid Managed Care Operations (MCO's) continue their testimony on other problems besides pharmacies. Testimony this week saw local pharmacists testify that they're losing money on MCO reimbursements.

Changes could already be coming to Governor Steve Beshear’s proposed gambling amendment. That amendment would allow up to seven casinos in Kentucky, with five of them based at horse racing tracks. House Speaker Greg Stumbo supports expanded gaming in Kentucky, but he still has major questions about the amendment. And Stumbo says those questions will likely lead to changes to the measure if it can pass the state Senate.

A prominent conservative group is endorsing Indiana State Treasurer Richard Mourdock in his campaign to unseat a longtime Republican US Senator. Mourdock represents a challenge from the right against Senator Richard Lugar, who is seeking a seventh term this fall.

The Club For Growth has previously run TV attack ads against Lugar, but hadn’t previously endorsed Mourdock’s primary challenge. Now, the Mourdock campaign hopes the endorsement will lead to momentum and increased campaign contributions.

The first statewide audit from new Auditor Adam Edelen has uncovered some familiar problems.

Edelen is required to conduct an audit of all state agencies every year. His first report was released this morning. In it, Edelen takes many state agencies to task. That includes the Department of Military Affairs and the Kentucky Horse Park, which the report says incurred expensive and unnecessary fees for paying invoices too late.

After weeks of waiting, Governor Steve Beshear and state Senator Damon Thayer have unveiled their constitutional amendment for expanded gambling.

The amendment allows for up to seven casinos in Kentucky, but five must be at horse racing tracks. The two free-standing casinos cannot be within sixty miles of a track, regardless of whether that track has a casino.

The Associated Press reports the Kentucky Court of Appeals has been asked to reinstate recently enacted legislative district lines after a judge found they don't meet Constitutional muster. The Legislative Research Commission today told the Appellate Court that Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd overstepped his authority in throwing out the new lines and ordering lawmakers to run in existing districts.

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