Pluribus AM: Carrot beer on the campaign trail

HAPPENING THURSDAY: We host New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu (R) and former U.S. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D) to explore solutions to America’s fentanyl crisis. Join us at 3:30 p.m. ET, register right here.

Good morning, it’s Wednesday, March 13, 2024. In today’s edition, Republican AGs sue to block SEC climate reporting rule; Mississippi Gov rules out Medicaid expansion; Kansas, Georgia advance gender-affirming care bans:

Top Stories

ENVIRONMENT: Republican attorneys general in nine states have sued to block a new federal rule requiring most publicly traded companies to disclose greenhouse gas emissions and climate risk. Iowa Attorney General Brenna Bird (R), leading the suit, alleges the SEC cannot implement the rule without congressional action. (Pluribus News)

MEDICAID: Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves (R) told lawmakers earlier this month he would veto any Medicaid expansion bill lawmakers might pass. The state House has already passed an expansion plan that includes work requirements, but the Senate has not taken up a version. (Mississippi Today)

LGBTQ RIGHTS: The Kansas House advanced legislation to ban gender-affirming care for transgender minors. The bill also bans state employees — including teachers — from using a trans child’s preferred pronouns. (Kansas Reflector) The Georgia Senate approved a measure barring puberty blockers for transgender minors. (Georgia Public Broadcasting)

EDUCATION: Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) has signed legislation barring portable wireless devices from classrooms in an effort to force kids to put their phones down. The law requires school districts to adopt policies banning devices from class, with exceptions for kids who need to use devices to manage health care or in the event of an emergency. (Chalkbeat)

MORE: The Kentucky House has approved a proposed constitutional amendment that would ask voters to create education savings accounts or vouchers. The amendment, if approved by voters, would allow the legislature to decide how to create and fund those accounts. (Associated Press)

GUN POLITICS: The Rhode Island Senate Judiciary Committee has approved legislation requiring firearms to be stored safely at homes. The House Judiciary Committee plans to hear testimony today on a handful of bills, including a ban on assault-style weapons and a limit on gun purchases to one a month. (Providence Journal)

HOUSING: The Arizona legislature gave final approval to a measure that stops cities from requiring home owners associations, minimum home sizes and community amenities. The bipartisan legislation also bars cities of more than 70,000 residents from setting minimum or maximum lot sizes. (Arizona Republic)

TAXES: The Internal Revenue Service is rolling out a free electronic system for filing tax returns directly with the agency in 12 selected states. The system is open to taxpayers who have simple W-2 forms and claim standard deductions. The Treasury Department estimates that up to a third of taxpayers could file using the system. (Associated Press)

In Politics & Business

WHITE HOUSE: President Biden and former President Donald Trump both clinched their respective party’s nominations in election contests on Wednesday. Georgia’s 56 Democratic delegates put Biden over the top, while Trump clinched the GOP nod with Washington’s 43 delegates. (Associated Press)

WISCONSIN: The state Supreme Court will consider overturning a previous ruling limiting the use of absentee ballot drop boxes. The court ruled in 2022 that those boxes may only be used in election offices. Now that liberals control the court, a top Democratic super PAC asked justices to return to that decision. (Associated Press)

MORE: Supporters of an effort to recall Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R) appear to be about 900 signatures short of the 6,850 autographs they need to force Vos back onto the ballot. (Wisconsin Examiner)

PEOPLE: New Mexico Senate Minority Leader Greg Baca (R) and House Minority Leader Ryan Lane (R) will not seek re-election this year. Baca had been redistricted into a seat with a fellow Republican. Lane opted not to file for re-election at the last minute. (Santa Fe New Mexican)

By The Numbers

$10 million: The amount of money Michigan is poised to save on road salt. A warmer-than-average winter has meant Michigan has used 37% less road salt than usual, a savings of about 175,000 tons — or the equivalent of a blue whale of salt. (Bridge MI)

21: The number of appointees hired by Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) who have been fired by the state legislature. The Wisconsin Senate on Tuesday fired eight more appointees, including two University of Wisconsin regents and four judicial watchdogs who defied Republican hopes of disqualifying Supreme Court Justice Janet Protasiewicz from a redistricting case. (Associated Press)

6: The number of Iditarod sled dog races won by Dallas Seavey, who claimed his record-breaking sixth title on Tuesday. Seavey’s father Mitch won the race three times, and finished second behind Dallas in 2016. (Anchorage Daily News)

Off The Wall

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) has great teeth, and she wants you to know it. Noem posted an infomercial-style video on the platform X touting Texas-based cosmetic dentists who adjusted her teeth. (Associated Press)

California Assemblyman Jesse Garcia (D) has introduced legislation to ban foods that contain six synthetic food dyes from public schools. Those dyes are found in Doritos, Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, Froot Loops, M&Ms, Jolly Ranchers and Mountain Dew, among other products. (Los Angeles Times)

New Jersey’s Department of Health had a plan to respond to a global pandemic years before the coronavirus outbreak began in 2020 — but no one knew it existed. A report examining the state’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic found senior leaders were unaware of the plan’s existence. (NJ Advance Media)

Quote of the Day

“It’s actually an award-winning bee. And it is actually made with carrots.”

Vice President Kamala Harris, picking up a six-pack of King of Carrot Flowers Saison during a campaign stop at Ratio Beerworks in Denver. (Colorado Sun)