Over ten thousand pieces of shark fins are dried on the rooftop of a factory building in Hong Kong
© Bobby Yip / Reuters / REUTERS

msnbc   |  January 01, 2014

The most interesting new laws in 2014

From legal marijuana in Colorado to illegal shark fins in Delaware, NBC’s Domenico Montanaro runs through some of the most interesting new laws to take effect in 2014.

Share This:

This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> beginning today, it's lights out for incandesce ept bulbs. the u.s. will stop producing the bulbs as they work to shrink the carbon footprint. that's one of the 140,000 new laws that goes into effect. colorado will make history becoming the first state to sell recreational marijuana and illinois will publish the names of drivers who stiff toll booths . don't think of ordering shark fin soup in delaware. joining us right now, we have a lot to talk about. we will get to 40,000.

>> absolutely. i love the illinois where they are going to publish your name if you go through the tolls and don't pay them. over $1,000. there was a case where a guy got sued because he kept going through the easy pass lanes. it's funny when you think about people traveling now during this holiday. you wonder how many people are doing that.

>> it's hard to believe folks have high bills that they haven't paid. it makes a lot of sense. there a lot of weird and interesting laws. there is the calorie count requirement for venting machines.

>> i love this requirement for vending machines . they are going to put that in place. the food industry is not liking it and saying they have to lay off workers because of it. the food and drug administration said they don't think it will harm the economy because the net benefit of the health care savings will help. the government tries to restrict something like junk food or cigarettes and you wind up sees the industry push back and the economy has really shown growth.

>> the vending machine owners say they will have to cut back employees because of this law.

>> right and we have seen that over the past couple of decades as the governments in state and city governments try to restrict some of those things. you go to mcdonald's and you can see calorie counts on the board. that's something they didn't like in the first place.

>> a law about mothers being able to take home placentas. that's interesting.

>> hard for me to comment on that one. two kids at home, i'm not sure we would do something like that, but there is a lot of different laws on the books now. even more serious things. when you think about voting laws. you think about virginia to be able to vote or register to vote online. as a former high school english teacher , this one provision is interesting. at 16 years old now, able to preregister to vote and you can't cast a ballot until 18. what that will be like in the classroom trying to introduce the more civics.

>> will it help?

>> i think it will because you can say look, in a couple of years you should vote. there was no practical implication for them. also what's going to mean politically is all the efforts and the voter registration drives are going to start moving into the high schools and start a lot sooner. 2014 coming up. anyone turning 16, colorado is important for 2016 . they will be able to vote and interesting to see if the number of voters go up because of this.

>> in california, a digital law that requires companies to describe how they share information that they might be pulling for you.

>> this is all about privacy. we have seen this whole thing with the nsa and privacy matters. this is what people will be talking about more and more as people have the smart phones and digital devices and can't imagine a world without them without realizing corporations are tracking every transaction you make. i think that privacy is going to be a huge issue going forward in the next couple of years.

>> let's move to the races, the top three races to watch. let's start with the louisiana senate .

>> i think louisiana senate race could be the linchpin race. incumbent mary landrieu going up against a republican there. this is a red state , but if mary landrieu can hold on, this is the race we are watching politically to say if this one stays democratic, maybe they hold the senate by one. if they don't, this could be where we look at it and say this is how republicans wind uptaking control.

>> everybody is watching this one. the florida governor 's race.

>> the incumbent republican was swept into the tea party wave in 2010 . he's a wealthy former health care executive pledging to end up to $100 million on the race. charlie crist , former republican turned independent and now democrat running against him for his old job back. this is going to be a race to watch in a very important swing state . it's going to be so much money poured into this race. this is a very expensive tv state. a lot of expensive television markets . when you look at money, there is nowhere else that there is going to be more spent than in florida.

>> a good indication in 2016 for the presidential election. finally that we have seen, mitch mcconnell all throughout the last year or so, very careful about the stances he's taken. that's a key race he is up against.

>> for attention, this is going to be the top race to watch. at least through the republican primary , this is an important race because we will see in march he is up against steve stockman and everyone thinks he will run away with that. mcconnell after that, it could reshape the narrative on the tea party versus conservative story line if mcconnell is able to beat the challenger and he is able to run against grimes and all indicates it's a fairly close race and a lot of money and attention going to be spent on that race to watch.

>> it's a mid-term year, but last year was an off year. you will have a busier 2014 than last year.

>> it's always busy. whether it's capitol hill politics going on this year that we thought would be able to go in place after obama's first year, there is no off years anymore. it will be busy, but i like to watch the races. it will be fun.

>> thank you and happy new year, friend.