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I drove an hour and a half through steady rain and arrived at the Capitol a little after 9:15 a.m. I made my way to the House Communications Office and checked in with the director. Shortly before the start of the day’s session he escorted me to one of the side galleries on the floor and later introduced me to one of the doorkeepers.  I set up my camera on a tripod and then watched and photographed the proceedings.

Representative Luke Scavuzzo (D-124) (center, seated) in conversation on the House floor while other representatives (standing in the background) wait to be recognized by the Speaker.

Over the course of the day I was able to have a number of brief conversations with representatives and longer conversations with others. At this point in the session votes can come fast and furious. There is a constant hubbub of conversation and activity taking place barely below the debate and action on the floor.

Representative Mary Still (D-25) (center, standing at microphone) in debate on the “sexually oriented businesses” bill – HCS SS SCS SBs 586 & 617.

HCS SS SCS SBs 586 & 617 [pdf] on “sexually oriented businesses” was originally sponsored by Senator Matt Bartle (r). A earlier iteration of this bill in a previous session was killed in a House committee and those circumstances have been the subject of a federal investigation and grand jury.

The tally on one of several votes on the “sexually oriented businesses” bill – HCS SS SCS SBs 586 & 617.

Curiously, during today’s proceedings (and reportedly during yesterday’s, too), debate on the “sexually oriented businesses” bill was not subjected to a previous question vote (a parliamentary procedure designed to end debate and move to a vote) as quickly as other bills.

Speaker Ron Richard on the dais (center, right) and Minority Leader Paul LeVota (D-52) on the floor (right, standing). The press gallery is directly above the dais.