|January 25, 2013||What the governor did not talk about||no comments|
|January 07, 2013||Late session start makes holiday more enjoyable||no comments|
|December 14, 2012||The governor, Christmas parties, tours, wise men||no comments|
|December 05, 2012||Reeves not backing down on charter school sites||no comments|
JACKSON -- Hard to know if it has any significant for the 2013 legislative session, but it was of interest that there was no mention of immigration during Gov. Phil Bryant's State of the State speech.
In the past, the Republican governor has been an outspoken advocate of passing legislation giving local law enforcement more authority to check for undocumented immigrants,
But during his recent State of State that was not mentioned.
The governor, an outspoken opponent of abortion, also said nothing about that topic even though he spoke on the 40th anniversary of the landmark Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision.
In addition, the issue of guns was not mentioned even though he previously had urged legislators to pass laws to oppose any restrictions that might be placed on gun ownership by the federal government.
The governor, for the most part, focused on education and economic development during the speech.
JACKSON -- The Legislature's Jan. 8 opening on Tuesday is the latest the session can begin.
Under the Mississippi Constitution the session begins the first Tuesday after the first Monday in January. The earliest the session can begin is on Jan. 2 when Monday is New Year's day.
I like the late opening.
First of all it makes it easier to celebrate the holidays. When the session begins early in January, it conflicts with the holidays and forces the early removal of Christmas decorations, which is basically an all day endeavor in the Harrison household where my wife essentially insists on decorating every nook and cranny for the holidays.
But with the late start of the session, we left the Christmas decorations up until this past weekend. During Christmas my wife replaces our regular glasses with 12 Days of Christmas glasses. This means I can get one glass, which is easily identified, and use it for days at a time.
I like that, and I like Christmas decorations.
I wish the Constitution was changed so that the session began on the 8th each year.
For the holidays, it is the right thing to do.
JACKSON -- Phil Bryant, like many past governors, hosted a Christmas party for the media.
I am always humbled to be invited to a Christmas party at the governor's mansion. I am always appreciative that while individual governors may dislike coverage they receive by a media outlet they, in my experience, have been gracious in such settings as a Christmas party.
Quick story from the Christmas party.
First lady Deborah Bryant was in front of the mansion during the Jackson Christmas parade when a little girl watching the parade admired the big white house that is the mansion and asked who lives there.
The first lady replied the governor does. The little girl then asked if he was at home. The first lady replied he was. She said she wished she could go inside the house.
Deborah Bryant said she lived there, too, and said come on. Rumor was she did not get the standard tour, but instead a special tour that included more of the house.
Oh, Bryant also confirmed that there was trouble putting up the Nativity scene at the governor's mansion because it was missing a wise man.
He said it was hard to find three wise men around the Capitol.
During the recent trip to Helena, Ark., to visit the KIPP Delta School, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves made it clear he is not backing down from his insistence that charter schools be allowed without local board approval in what are now accredited as C districts or successful districts under the old accreditation system.
That was one of the sticking points that led to the rejection of charter schools during the 2012 session. Both Gov. Phil Bryant and Speaker Phiilp Gunn have indicated in recent statements that low performing or D and F accredited systems might be a good point to start with charter schools in Mississippi.
While Bryant and Gunn did not say their positions are locked in, if they are in unison on the issue during the session, Reeves may have to back down or run the risk of killing charter schools in 2013.
That could prove troublesome for the Republican lieutenant governor because he has become one of the most ardent supporters of charter schools.