GOP agenda: unions, lawsuits, abortion and school choice

AP News
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Posted: Dec 24, 2016 2:50 AM

Republicans emerge from the November elections holding their greatest level of power in decades. Not only will Republicans control the White House and Congress, but the GOP also will hold 33 governors' offices and have majorities in 33 state legislatures.

Some of the issues Republicans are planning to pursue during the upcoming state legislative sessions.

ABORTION

— Ban most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

— Ban dilation and extraction abortions, a procedure more commonly used in the second trimester.

— Lengthen the time women must wait to have an abortion after receiving counseling about its effects.

— Block government funding from going to abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood.

BUSINESSES

— Reduce or eliminate corporate income taxes.

— Relax business regulations and professional licensing requirements.

EDUCATION

— Expand the availability of vouchers, scholarships or tax credits that allow taxpayer money to cover K-12 tuition costs at private schools.

— Expand opportunities for charter schools, which provide a public school alternative to traditional neighborhood schools.

GUNS

— Allow people with concealed gun permits to carry weapons on college campuses.

— Reduce the costs for concealed gun permits and ensure that permits from one state are recognized elsewhere.

— Allow people to carry concealed guns without needing permits or going through training.

LAWSUITS

— Limit how much money plaintiffs can win in medical malpractice and personal injury cases.

— Restrict where lawsuits can be filed in an attempt to prevent plaintiffs from bringing suit in jurisdictions perceived to be favorable.

— Restrict who can qualify to provide expert witness testimony.

— Reduce the rates used to calculate interest on monetary judgments.

UNIONS

— Enact right-to-work laws, which prohibit workplace contracts that have mandatory union fees.

— Restrict the collective bargaining powers of public employee unions.

— Require members of public employee unions to annually affirm their desire for dues to be deducted from paychecks.

— Curtail or repeal prevailing wage laws, which set minimum pay scales on public construction projects.