By Hayat Norimine, Accountability Editor; and Ryan Suppe, State Politics Reporter
BILL WOULD DECLARE GUN BUSINESSES ESSENTIAL DURING EMERGENCIES
A new Senate bill introduced yesterday would distinguish businesses broadly around firearms — including manufacturing, transporting, transferring or storing them — as essential and let them stay open during disaster declarations.
Under the bill, guns also couldn’t be confiscated and the concealed weapons law couldn’t be circumvented during emergency declarations.
The sponsor, Republican Sen. Todd Lakey, said Gov. Brad Little helped with the legislation and supports the bill.
SOME REPUBLICANS STILL TAKE ISSUE WITH MARRIAGE EQUALITY
A routine bill that puts state tax code in line with federal law got derailed when a group of Republicans encouraged a “no” vote.
Why? Because the feds recognize same-sex marriage. A 2015 U.S. Supreme Court decision made same-sex marriage legal, which overruled Idaho’s ban on gay marriage. Republicans made the same objections on the same conformity bill in 2017.
“Using the federal definition does recognize marriages that do not fit the one-man, one-woman category marriage that we have committed to being the only recognized marriage in our state,” Republican Rep. Ron Nate said on the floor.
The bill still ultimately passed with a 46-22 vote.
WHAT ELSE HAPPENED?
- Rep. Ron Nate, a Rexburg Republican, introduced a bill again for the state treasurer to invest in gold and silver. Last year the measure passed in the House, but never got a hearing in a Senate committee.
- “I will not hear legislation that is going to put a woman on trial for murder for abortion.” Rep. Brent Crane, a Nampa Republican, told Republican Rep. Heather Scott yesterday that he wouldn’t let her abortion bill get a hearing unless she removed that provision from the bill.
- A bill to ban restrictive racial covenants was sent to the Senate floor for a vote.
- Keep track of high-profile bills as they go through the legislative process. You can find yesterday’s updates here.
COMMITTEES TO WATCH TODAY
- 8 a.m. Joint Finance-Appropriations. Included on the agenda today is the Department of Fish and Game. Here’s where to watch remotely.
- 9 a.m. House State Affairs. Lawmakers will consider some draft legislation, including one on removal of memorials and another on election errors. Here’s where to watch remotely.
- 9:30 a.m. House Health and Welfare. Director Dave Jeppesen will hold a presentation on crisis standards of care. Here’s where to watch remotely.
- 1:30 p.m. House Judiciary, Rules and Administration. The agenda is chock-full of new legislation to be considered. Here’s where to watch remotely.
- 1:30 p.m. Senate Judiciary and Rules. The public today can testify on Senate Bill 1240, which would ban restrictive housing covenants based on race. Here’s where to watch remotely.
- 3 p.m. House Ethics and House Policy. Lawmakers will review House Rule 45, the ethics procedure in which legislators last year concluded two of their colleagues engaged in “conduct unbecoming.” One faced a rape allegation and has since been charged with two felonies.