Acacia Squires

When it comes to the presidency and the U.S. Senate, Democrats are largely playing offense. That's true further down the ballot, too, for the offices where many of the policies that affect our daily lives are made: state legislatures.

With the new year come many new state laws across the country. There are the usual suspects — gun laws, marijuana legalization and housing protections — but there are also some new frontiers: groundbreaking laws concerning Internet user privacy and the classification of contract workers in California, for example.

Here are some of the most notable laws taking effect Jan. 1, in no particular order:

Red flag

Updated at 3:39 a.m. ET

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, held onto his seat Saturday after a tough challenge from his Republican opponent, Eddie Rispone, a wealthy businessman and political newcomer who was supported by President Trump.

Edwards defeated Rispone by about 40,000 votes. Edwards benefited from strong support and high voter turnout in the state's more populated urban areas while Rispone carried most of Louisiana's rural parishes. Polls showed a close race in the final week.

Gubernatorial wasn't a word I thought much about until I started editing pieces about gubernatorial elections.

In fact, there's a gubernatorial election in Louisiana on Saturday between the only Democratic governor in the deep South and his Republican challenger, a wealthy Trump-backed businessman.

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