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Bosma: No Longer Bauer’s “Target Practice” As Session Opens

Following an acrimonious change in leadership at the end of 2012, House Democrats enter the 2013 legislative session with a new representative in charge.

Brian Bosma

Photo: Dan Goldblatt/WFIU News

House Speaker Brian Bosma addresses other legislators in the Indiana statehouse.

When South Bend Representative Pat Bauer led his caucus, he was a firebrand who often pounded on the dais when he led his charges.  Michigan City Rep Scott Pelath, who takes over for Bauer as head of the House Democrats, is also excitable, but says he wants to do less arguing and more bargaining.

“One thing that Speaker Bosma and I agree on is that – and I don’t like clichés – is that you can disagree without being disagreeable,” Pelath says.

House Speaker Brian Bosma Monday seemed glad to be rid of Bauer, saying he felt he was “target practice” for the former leader of the Democratic caucus.

“Really I’m looking forward to a much more positive relationship [with Pelath],” Bosma says. “Scott’s an honorable guy, former Army officer, a person I feel I can deal with very well and will keep his word.”

Still, Pelath and Bosma disagree on issues ranging from public versus private school funding, application of the Affordable Care Act in Indiana and voting on whether to add a gay marriage ban to the state constitution.

Stan Jastrzebski

WFIU/WTIU News Senior Editor Stan Jastrzebski spent time as a reporter with WGN Radio in Chicago and as an editor at Network Indiana, an Indianapolis news service. Stan is the winner of awards from the Associated Press, the RTDNA, the Indiana Broadcasters Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. He hosts WFIU's Ask the Mayor and anchors WTIU's InFocus.

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