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Indiana Democrats Return To House Floor

Demonstrators in the Indiana statehouse protest over right-to-work legislation that is set to be a key priority in this session.

Democrats returned to the floor of the Indiana House on Monday, allowing legislative business to move forward in that chamber for the first time this session, but their return may not be permanent.

After three days of scheduled session without action, the House officially handed down its list of legislation, beginning work for 2012. Speaker Brian Bosma says there will be no repercussions for Democrats who held out.

“We just weren’t prepared to begin fining yet and appreciate them being back here today and we’ll precede with business, just as we did today,” he says.

Right to work, which bans union contracts requiring non-union employees pay fees for representation, was the cause of last week’s holdout. Bosma says the right-to-work bill could be eligible for offering amendments on the floor as soon as Thursday.

Minority Leader Pat Bauer says he has asked for at least another week before that legislative step to allow for more public hearings on the issue over the weekend.

“If the majority does things radically wrong, you still have the right to break the quorum and move on for a day or two,” he says.

Bauer says his caucus will decide day-to-day on what actions to take.

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