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Indiana House Democrats' 2023 priorities push beyond governor's agenda

Indiana House Democratic Leader Phil GiaQuinta sits on the House floor. GiaQuinta is a White man with brown hair, wearing glasses and a suit.
Lauren Chapman
/
IPB News
House Democratic Leader Phil GiaQuinta (D-Fort Wayne) said Indiana must invest in its people.

Indiana House Democrats will push for many of the same priorities Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb is advocating for in 2023.

House Democratic Leader Phil GiaQuinta (D-Fort Wayne) said Indiana must invest in its people. And the first way to do that, he argued, is “adequately” funding public health.

“Good health should be a Hoosier basic," GiaQuinta said. "Health outcomes must rise above partisan fighting.”

The House Democrats’ agenda goes further than the governor’s – they want to fully fund the Public Health Commission’s recommendation at $243 million a year.

READ MORE: Governor’s Public Health Commission issues final report with $240M price tag, following system study

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Democrats also want to go further in increasing access to early childhood education, pushing for universal pre-K.

“The more children we have accessing early education, the more benefits Indiana will reap in the long run,” GiaQuinta said.

GiaQuinta said the legislature needs to focus on these kinds of issues and not the “extreme, needless culture wars.”

Contact reporter Brandon at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

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Brandon Smith has covered the Statehouse for Indiana Public Broadcasting for more than a decade, spanning three governors and a dozen legislative sessions. He's also the host of Indiana Week in Review, a weekly political and policy discussion program seen and heard across the state. He previously worked at KBIA in Columbia, Missouri and WSPY in Plano, Illinois. His first job in radio was in another state capitol - Jefferson City, Missouri - as a reporter for three stations around the Show-Me State.