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Lawmakers Kick Off 2019 Session Preaching Bipartisanship

House Minority Leader Rep. Phil GiaQuinta (D-Fort Wayne) gives a floor speech on the 2019 session's opening day. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)

Legislative leaders of both parties kicked off the new session Thursday with messages of bipartisanship. But it’s also clear where some of 2019’s dividing lines will be.

The first day of session is traditionally reserved for the House Minority Leader to lay out their caucus’s vision for the session. And some of new Democratic leader Rep. Phil GiaQuinta’s (D-Fort Wayne) agenda isn’t popular on the other side of the aisle. That includes pre-existing health condition protections, redistricting reform, and more money for pre-K education.

“We must embark on a bold expansion of the program to give all children across this state access to pre-education,” GiaQuinta says.

But Republican floor leader Rep. Matt Lehman (R-Berne) says there are significant areas GiaQuinta cited that will have bipartisan support.

“Teacher pay – pushing money down to the teachers – is a priority of ours, as is fixing DCS,” Lehman says.

The 2019 session will run through late April.

Follow the 2019 legislative session.

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