Georgia Legislature Today: Football and politics on first day of session

A look ahead at the 2018 legislative session with AJC political reporters Mark Niesse and Maya Prabhu. Plus Phrase of the Week with James Salzer. (Video by Bob Andres, edit by Erica A. Hernandez/ AJC STAFF)

The Georgia General Assembly at a glance for Jan. 8, 2018:

Opening Day: The Georgia Legislature plans to kick off its yearly lawmaking session at 10 a.m. on Monday. The state House and Senate will gavel in the session, decide when they'll meet next at the Capitol and then quickly leave before the big game. Down the street a few hours later, the sporting world will be watching Georgia play Alabama for the college football championship at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Legislators will announce Monday whether they're taking a day off Tuesday because of the championship game. President Donald Trump is attending the game.

Election-year politics: Every House and Senate seat is up for election this year, and some legislators are running for higher office. Many of them want to finish the state government's business by the end of March so they can resume campaigning. Some running for office could use the legislation session as a public platform to promote their campaign messages. Legislators aren't allowed to collect campaign contributions during the legislative session.

On the record: "My strategy is going to be talking to the people of Georgia and reminding them that we have elections every two years in this state. If we're going to take off every other year for people to run for office, then maybe we just ought not have a session in an election year." — House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge.

Business days remaining in the 2018 legislative session: 40