The state House has quietly advanced a measure that would make disorderly and contemptuous behavior at the Legislature a petty misdemeanor.
Today’s action sends the bill to the Senate for consideration.
If House Bill 1751 becomes law, a member of the public could be removed from a hearing, fined or even jailed up to 10 days for intentionally disrupting legislative proceedings.
Current law already allows for the removal of persons who intentionally interfere with legislative proceedings, whether by speaking out of turn, refusing to answer questions or being threatening or abusive.
Only one person has had to be removed from the Senate chamber for standing up and verbally objecting to a religious invocation.
House Speaker Calvin Say says the bill doesn’t target any individual.