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We made the drive to Jefferson City today for the opening of the 2016 legislative session of the General Assembly. We observed the proceedings from a side gallery in the House chamber.

Speaker Todd Richardson (r) addressed the House:

Speaker Todd Richardson (r) addressing the House.

Speaker Todd Richardson (r) addressing the House.

Apparently, one of the Speaker’s concerns is some kind of danger to religious freedom.

One of the requirements of the opening of each session is a reading of the text of the Bill of Rights in the U.S. Constitution. Apparently the Second Amendment is the holy of holies for republicans – as indicated by their ostentatious applause. There was no other applause until the final amendment of the Bill of Rights was read.

Representative Dean Dohrman (r) on the floor of the House.

Representative Dean Dohrman (r) on the floor of the House.

HB 1637: #*^& you, @$$hole (December 3, 2015)

Representative Rick Brattin (r) on the floor of the House.

Representative Rick Brattin (r) on the floor of the House.

“Is there a proper blessing for the Missouri House?” (December 12, 2015)

HB 1743: the reviews are in (December 14, 2015)

HB 1743: and so it goes (December 16, 2015)

After the opening session adjourned there was a press conference and question and answer session in the House Lounge [Thomas Hart Benton murals] with members of the House and Senate [Democratic Party] minority.

House Minority Floor Leader Jacob Hummel  (D) on the floor of the House.

House Minority Floor Leader Jacob Hummel (D) on the floor of the House.

House Minority Floor Leader Jacob Hummel (D) at the House and Senate minority press conference: ….I’ve heard, uh, some of the statements by some of the elected officials of [the] state calling for an end to allowing immigrants to get into the state for, um, reasons of security. Um, I don’t know how anyone can say that that three-year-old that washed up on the shore in Greece was a terrorist. Um, I think that is a very disturbing thing that we’re going to keep, let, allow children to continue to die….

One of two things (December 8, 2015)

Senator Jill Schupp (D) at the House and Senate minority press conference.

Senator Jill Schupp (D) at the House and Senate minority press conference.

Senate Minority Floor Leader Joe Keaveny (D) listening to a media question at the House and Senate minority press conference.

Senate Minority Floor Leader Joe Keaveny (D) listening to a media question at the House and Senate minority press conference.

Senate Minority Floor Leader Joe Keaveny (D) at the House and Senate minority press conference: ….I think we’ll have a long discussion about voter photo ID, yes. Uh, and you know what? And it’s kind of ironic, isn’t it? We’re going to have, we’re going to have a long discussion about photo, photo voter ID without any valid IDs [in compliance with the federal requirements of Real ID] right now. Right? [laughter]….

Representative Stacey Newman (D) speaking with a television reporter after the House and Senate Minority press conference.

Representative Stacey Newman (D) speaking with a television reporter after the House and Senate Minority press conference.

HB 1397: wait for it, wait for it (December 15, 2015)

Rep. Stacey Newman (D): on reducing gun violence (January 5, 2016)