Senate President Pro Tem Jonathan Dismang made some good news Sunday appearing with Roby Brock on Talk Business and Politics: He said Senate debate soon will be live streamed on the web, as the House has been for several years. He expects the start sometime in the coming week.
Nothing in the work for Senate committees, though they typically feature less discussion that the more rambunctious House committees. For that matter, Senate floor work is generally done with less theatrics, too, though there are occasional exceptions.
Nonetheless, that’s a blow for openness that past leadership has rejected.
Dismang also spoke optimistically of having enough votes for AsaCare, Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s plan for continuing the private option version of Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion for two years — stripped of some expensive add-ons for poverty-level recipients — while a task force works on possibly large changes in the entire Medicaid system.
Dismang also said he felt the 75% supermajority of votes needed for private option funding renewal were there in the Senate’s current 34-member body.
“I believe at this point, for the bill itself that would set up the task force that he specified, I believe the votes are there for that. And I also think that we’re close if not beyond where we need to be for the appropriation,” Dismang said.
UPDATE AND CORRECTION: Sen. Dismang informs me that, in the beginning, only audio “at this point.” That’s still an advancement. Let the sun shine in.