Governor John Bel Edwards’ re-election was the big political story in 2019. Political analyst Bernie Pinsonat says with the state no longer dealing with budget deficits, the major story in 2020 will be how much money the state will actually spend. He says the Republican-controlled legislature will look to reduce government spending.

“How much money do we spend on this, how much money do we spend on that, how does the governor want to increase the budget” said Pinsonat.

Edwards has said he wants to increase funding for early childhood education, higher ed and get teacher salaries to the southern regional average.

Edwards clashed with House GOP leadership in his first term, but the governor had an ally in Senate President John Alario. Pinsonat says Alario is no longer in the legislature, so he expects bigger battles over money in Edwards’ second-term.

“How do they get along, what do they agree on, what kind of projects are they going to like, it will even spill over to the Bond Commission, because that is where the projects get approved,” said Pinsonat.

Pinsonat expects a big battle over auto insurance reform in the 2020 session. He expects Republican leadership to bring forward legislation after a similar effort was blocked by the governor last year.

“He can veto it this year if it passes, which it will pass, but the question is will he work with the legislature and do something with the legislature on insurance reform,” said Pinsonat.

The 2020 regular session set to begin March 9th.

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