Two Louisiana state senators said today they will introduce a measure to expel state Sen. Troy Brown, D-Napoleonville, from the Legislature following pleas of no contest in two separate domestic abuse allegations since he was elected in 2015.
State Sens. Dan Claitor, R-Baton Rouge, and Sharon Hewitt, R-Slidell, told reporters they will file an expulsion resolution after the opening of the special session, which opened Monday night. They said they expect the issue to be resolved by the end of the special session on Feb. 22.
“Any time an elected official breaks the law, it erodes the public’s trust,” Hewitt said. “There is zero tolerance for illegal or unethical behavior from our elected leaders and I believe this resolution is a step in that direction.”
Both Senators said they have not spoken to Brown — who has retained a lawyer — about the allegations. Claitor said Sen. Yvonne Colomb, D-New Orleans, will file a competing resolution during the special session that seeks a less harsh penalty than expulsion.
Article 3, Section 7 of the Louisiana Constitution
says each house of the Legislature may punish its members for “disorderly conduct or contempt,” and can expel a member with a two-thirds vote. It also allows lawmakers to issue subpoenas to summon witnesses.
Later this week the full Senate will meet as a committee of the whole to introduce the measure, and next week it will hold a full hearing, Claitor said.