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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri House Republicans have chosen Majority Leader John Diehl to be their speaker nominee for 2015.
Republicans met privately during Wednesday's veto override session. Diehl and House member Caleb Jones, of California, Mo., had been seeking the nod to be speaker.
The House speaker is the top position in the 163 member House and officially is elected by the chamber on the first day of each biennial session. Republicans currently hold 109 seats. Under a tradition begun several terms ago, Republicans have picked their next speaker nominee more than a year before the election to give the person time to prepare for the job.
Current Speaker Tim Jones is barred by term limits from seeking re-election to the House in 2014.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - An expert in term limits says a Republican governor candidate's proposal to overhaul the Illinois Legislature is better structured than past failed bids.
University of Illinois Professor Chris Mooney says Bruce Rauner's petition drive to limit lawmakers to eight years in office is savvy in its three-pronged approach. The Winnetka venture capitalist's proposal would not only limit the length of terms but also cut the size of the Senate and make it harder to override a governor's veto.
Those elements could help the proposal overcome a state Supreme Court ruling that struck down a 1994 initiative because it didn't make "structural and procedural" changes to the Legislature.
But the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform says it is concerned that Rauner's petition drive could unfairly boost his separate governor's campaign.
Currently, lawmakers generally are limited to eight years in the House and eight years in the Senate. A proposed constitutional amendment would let officials serve 16 years in the Legislature. The time could be spent entirely in one chamber or split between the two.
House members passed the measure 121-31 on Thursday, sending it to the Senate. The proposal would appear on the ballot if it passes the Legislature.
Backers of the proposal say the change would allow the Legislature to operate better. The advocacy group U.S. Term Limits says the proposal is an effort to "cling to office."