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vt.Buzz ~ a political blog

Political notes from Free Press staff writers Terri Hallenbeck, Sam Hemingway and Nancy Remsen



Stirring the political pot

A couple of controversial bills are scheduled for debate and votes Tuesday morning – one in the House and another in the Senate.

The House will take up the Senate bill banning texting while driving, which the House Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to amend to include a host of other highway safety measures in a House-passed bill that the Senate has ignored.

Some of the extra provisions the House supported previously include a ban on cell phone use by young drivers and a restriction to hand-held phones for adults, nighttime driving restrictions for junior drivers and authorization for police to stop and cite drivers who aren’t obeying the state’s mandatory seat belt requirement.

The House and Senate have sparred on these issues repeatedly in recent years. Any debate on the House floor today could be about whether it’s worth going another round.

Meanwhile the Senate is scheduled to vote on a bill that would move the primary election from mid-September to the last Tuesday in August. The Senate already passed the change and the House has agreed, but rewrote the bill. The controversy here isn’t the Legislature’s position, but that of Gov. Jim Douglas. He disagrees. Will he veto the change?

-- Nancy Remsen

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This is the year the Democrats will do ANYTHING to win.
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