This has been the best Week-Before-They-Convene that I can remember. A whole bunch of bills proposing strange things from stranger national interest groups, people in one district calling for the recall of a member already, and committees set to come out throwing punches at the governor. I really question whether that children’s choir should be here to sing the flag song on the opening day. It could risky.
Monday, the D’s will determine the impact of Anchorage’s Lindsey Holmes’ jump from their club to the R’s club. There has been talk of misrepresentation and mention of a recall. I think they will decide that there is no great loss. It’s not like Holmes was a key player for the nearly extinct minority. (Give me some time to think of any key players there.) I remember her mostly for igniting the opposition to Bob Lynn’s bill that would have sentenced legal immigrants to lengthy stays in the DMV office. This was for people who had visas to enter the U.S. It lost twice on the House floor, to Lynn’s embarrassment. It will be fascinating to see her on Lynn’s team now. What to do?
There’s also a meeting of the Budget and Audit committee. A lot of it will be in secret, but they will release the results of an audit of the Office of Public Advocacy – particularly the way they handle the professional services contracts they let.
The traditional show starts Tuesday with gavels falling in the House and 1 pm and 2 pm in the Senate. They will be long sessions with a lot of pomp and formality as every member takes the oath of office. They will elect presiding officers, then break for a Committee on Committees meeting – a brief affair where everyone gets their assignments for the year. Then those bills will get read into the record.
The real work gets started Wednesday morning. I wrote here about the Senate Education and the Senate Transportation Committees. The Ethics Committee and the Legislative Council will meet during the week, also, but I’m not yet excited about either one.
I hope to see some good stories coming from all this from reporters who haven’t retired yet.