Lawmakers Play Beat The Clock

House and Senate members are considering more than 70 bills that sponsors and lobbyists alike want passed before a key legislative deadline.

Proposals that don't call for new spending or taxes must be
approved by at least one chamber by Thursday evening. Otherwise,
there's little chance they'll be heard until 2009.

House Speaker Joe Hackney says he intends to allow debate to go
past 9 p-m. Some bills had to be considered Wednesday for fear that an
opponent could block a second and final vote for the bill if
considered Thursday, killing the measure.

The Senate narrowly approved on the first of two required votes
a bill that would replace the winner-take-all system of choosing
presidential electors with a more proportional method.

In the House, several education-related bills were expected to
be considered, including measures to prohibit corporal punishment
and requiring local administrators to adopt policies against
bullying and student harassment.