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Republican Legislators Align Themselves With Pence’s Agenda

Legislators are still trying to match their own agenda with governor-elect Mike Pence as they prepare for him to take office Monday.

Speaker Brian Bosma Signing

Photo: Indiana House Republicans

House Speaker Brian Bosma signs House Bill 1001, a right-to-work bill, after the bill's passage in the Senate February 1, 2012.

Monday‘s inauguration of Governor-elect Mike Pence means a transition phase for relations between the governor‘s office and the legislature.

For eight years, Governor Mitch Daniels has had a full slate of policy proposals waiting for legislators. The new governor has a few proposals he emphasized on the campaign trail, including a tax cut and expanded vocational education, but is not expected to lay out a full agenda until his State of the State address a week after he is sworn in.

House Speaker Brian Bosma (R-Indianapolis) says legislators will not be waiting around. He notes the strong Republican majorities in both the House and Senate are largely in sync with Pence, with the potential exception of Pence‘s tax cut proposal, which has gotten a noncommittal reaction from Bosma and other legislative leaders.

“This isn‘t our first rodeo, so we‘ve got quite a few on our own, and know generally the direction we want the state to go,” he says. “That is, in great part, aligned with Governor Pence‘s vision; the details will be where things will get worked out.”

While both came to the statehouse from Washington, Pence‘s relationship with Bosma dates back to their time in law school together, while his circle of friends includes Senate President Pro Tem David Long (R-Fort Wayne) and other Republican legislators.

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