Originally published on Thu January 16, 2014 3:36 pm
For President Obama and Senate Democrats, who gathered in a White House meeting Wednesday, it's all about mutual aid at this point.
If Obama is to maintain any leverage in Congress, he needs Democrats to keep control of the Senate since the House appears likely to remain in Republican hands. And if his second term agenda has any hope of being achieved — such as tackling income inequality, overhauling immigration or reaching a durable nuclear deal with Iran — he'll need a Democratic Senate majority working side-by-side with him.
Originally published on Wed January 8, 2014 5:38 pm
A record-high percentage of Americans identified as political independents last year, according to a Gallup poll released Monday.
The survey, based on more than 18,000 interviews conducted throughout the year, found that 42 percent identified as independent, the highest figure since the polling firm began conducting interviews by telephone 25 years ago.
In 2013, 31 percent identified as Democrats, while 25 percent identified as Republican.
In 2014, Texas voters might just see something they haven't experienced in two decades — a competitive race for governor.
Current Republican Gov. Rick Perry isn't running for re-election, so it's an open race, with new faces and new optimism for Texas Democrats.
Earlier this year, the Democrats were once again facing the prospect of scrambling to find someone to run as their candidate. Then, on June 25, state Sen. Wendy Davis came to the Capitol in Austin wearing running shoes and ready to block a restrictive abortion bill.
Another Louisiana State Senator has jumped the aisle to the Republican party.
Sen. Rick Ward, who represents parts of the Capitol Region, from Port Allen into Assumption Parish, gives the Republicans a supermajority in the Senate. Several kinds of measures are constitutionally required to pass with a two-thirds vote, like tax increases and procedural items after a certain date near the end of the session.
The Louisiana House alliance of fiscally conservative Republicans and Democrats may have a harder time facing the Senate next session.
Jim talks with Democratic State Representative, and House Democratic Caucus leader, John Bel Edwards, who feels lawmakers should convene a Veto session to consider overturning some of Governor Jindal's budget item vetoes.
Audio should be posted by 11 am on Friday, July 5.