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The Three-month Regular Session of Louisiana’s Gop-controlled Legislature is Over


BATON ROUGE, La. — Louisiana lawmakers ended the three-month legislative session of 2024 on Monday. During that time, the GOP-controlled body passed a number of conservative policies that could change many things about the state.

The regular session was the first one with Republican Gov. Jeff Landry in charge. It was the start of a new era of conservative rule in Louisiana. John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, was governor for eight years before Landry took over in January. He served two terms and was the only Democratic governor in the Deep South.

Since the GOP has a supermajority in the Legislature, they can push conservative ideas. A set of anti-LGBTQ+ bills, measures to enforce immigration laws, a law that requires the Ten Commandments to be posted in public schools, and a law that reclassifies two drugs that cause abortions as controlled dangerous substances were all passed this session.

A $48 billion budget was passed by lawmakers. It includes money for criminal justice needs and a $2,000 stipend for teachers. That comes after a special session in February where lawmakers passed a number of laws meant to make the law enforcement system tougher.

The Advocate reported that lawmakers also took away about $9 million from programs that help young children learn. Opponents of the cut say that this means about 800 babies and children might not be able to go to daycare.

This session, legislation that was supported by both parties included steps to deal with Louisiana’s property insurance problem, where people are struggling to pay rates that are going through the roof.

A call for a constitutional convention was one move that didn’t get enough support. Landry asked for the assembly so that lawmakers and delegates chosen by the governor could change the state’s constitution, which is 50 years old. At the beginning of the meeting, Landry said that the paper was “bloated, outdated, antiquated, and much abused.” His office says that since 1974, more than 200 changes have been made to the law.

Some people who were against calling a convention said that the process was moving too fast and that it wasn’t clear what would change. The plan for a convention didn’t pass in the end.

Landry said that Monday’s normal meeting was a “great success.” He called two special sessions: one to deal with Louisiana’s high crime rate, and another to change the state’s congressional map so that it includes a second district that is mostly Black.

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