Tag: State Legislatures

Here’s One List Where Kirsten Gillibrand Is Winning and Kamala Harris Is Tied With Marianne Williamson

Amid the relentless focus on Washington and presidential politics, a liberal political action committee has ranked the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates on something much lower on the political food chain — what they are doing to help Democrats win state legislative seats. The idea is that rebuilding the party nationally depends on the hard work […]

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If the Supreme Court Won’t Prevent Gerrymandering, Who Will?

Progressives have long looked to federal courts to guard the rights of racial minorities and dissenters. But that protection is weakening. Faced with the enormous injustice of partisan gerrymandering, the Supreme Court last month permitted politicians drawing election district maps to discriminate by party and even potentially mask their racial “packing” and “cracking” as mere […]

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22 States Considered Eliminating the ‘Tampon Tax’ This Year. Here’s What Happened.

Why are tampons taxed when Viagra isn’t? That’s the question at the heart of the push to repeal the so-called tampon tax, a catchy phrase that refers to state sales taxes applied to menstrual products, including pads and cups. Thirty-five states still tax the items, despite momentum to change that. Opponents of the tax argue […]

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Tom Steyer, We Welcome You With Folded Arms

I am pointedly trying not to make predictions about the presidential race. But I think I can say with confidence that Tom Steyer — a hedge fund billionaire who announced this week that he, too, was running for president — will not be the Democratic nominee. It took years of political cultivation and an astute […]

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A Gun-Focused Special Session in Virginia Ends Abruptly

In the grim aftermath of the mass shooting in Virginia Beach in May, Gov. Ralph Northam insisted it was time for action. Thoughts and prayers were not enough, he said, as he called for a special session of the Virginia General Assembly to consider a raft of gun control proposals. That special session began on […]

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Blindsided by a ‘Devastating’ Veto, Alaska’s University System Pleads for a Lifeline

More than a month after Alaska lawmakers settled on a plan to cut $5 million in support for the state’s universities, Gov. Mike J. Dunleavy shocked the state last month by using a veto to cut much deeper, taking away $130 million more from the system that gave him his master’s degree. Mr. Dunleavy, a […]

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Wayward Democrats Return, but Are Still Under Fire

[What you need to know to start the day: Get New York Today in your inbox.] They say you can never go home again, but some of New York’s most infamous Democrats are hoping that’s wrong. For six years, an ever-flexible number of Democratic state senators — sometimes five, sometimes nine, sometimes just one — […]

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The Gold Rush for Private Health Data

“Claim Your 31st Right,” declares the #My31 app’s splash screen. “Review, share, and confirm your HUMAN right to your data as your property.” (The United Nations Declaration of Human Rights currently has 30, so a right to data would presumably come next.) That’s why #My31 doesn’t bill itself as a business so much as a […]

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How to Fight Gerrymandering Now

This article is part of David Leonhardt’s newsletter. You can sign up here to receive it each weekday. John Roberts and the four other Republican-appointed Supreme Court justices last month gave their approval to extreme gerrymandering, which means that federal courts will no longer be able to reject political maps drawn for partisan reasons. That’s […]

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California Poised to Become First State to Ban Discrimination Based on Natural Hair

California is poised to become the first state to ban racial discrimination against people based on their natural hairstyle. The State Assembly voted unanimously on Thursday to approve the measure, which the State Senate approved in April. It now heads to the desk of Gov. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, to be signed into law. The […]

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With No Supreme Court End to Gerrymandering, Will States Make It More Extreme?

ASHEVILLE, N.C. — For most of this decade, North Carolina Democrats have complained that the Republican-led legislature has aggressively altered the state’s voting rules and redrawn electoral maps to secure an overwhelming partisan advantage. On Thursday, the United States Supreme Court said it couldn’t do anything about it. The decision by the justices not to […]

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The Supreme Court’s Green Light to Partisan Gerrymandering Will Drag It Down Further Into the Mud

The Supreme Court decision on Thursday in Rucho v. Common Cause purports to take federal courts out of the business of policing partisan gerrymanders and leave the issue for states to handle. But the decision will instead push federal courts further into the political thicket, and, in states with substantial minority voter populations, force courts […]

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New Jersey Governor Promises No State (or Beach) Shutdown

In New Jersey, a nasty fight among top Democratic elected leaders threatened to ruin escapes to the Jersey Shore. A new state budget is due by midnight Sunday. Without one the state would shut down, closing, among many other things, Island State Beach Park, a 10-mile stretch of sand along the Atlantic Ocean that’s a […]

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What Is Gerrymandering? And Why Did the Supreme Court Rule on It?

The Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that the federal courts cannot decide a question with momentous political consequences: Whether congressional district maps in Maryland and North Carolina that were drawn specifically to tilt political power in favor of one party — a practice known as partisan gerrymandering — are acceptable. District courts had thrown the […]

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The Supreme Court Is Due to Rule on Gerrymandering. What’s That?

The Supreme Court is expected on Thursday, the last day of its term, to rule on a question with momentous political consequences: Whether congressional district maps in Maryland and North Carolina are unconstitutional partisan gerrymanders, unfairly benefiting Democrats in Maryland and Republicans in North Carolina. When the court heard arguments in the two cases in […]

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Why the Democratic Takeover in New Jersey Is More Civil War Than Progressive Revolution

[What you need to know to start the day: Get New York Today in your inbox.] On paper, Democrats in New Jersey have rarely commanded so much power: They control the governor’s office and both chambers of the Legislature, and a liberal surge last November nearly wiped congressional Republicans off the map. Just one G.O.P. […]

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Abraham Lincoln’s Leap From a Window, and 4 Other Ways Lawmakers Have Fled Votes

Passage of a climate change bill seemed likely last week in Oregon, where Democrats control the Legislature. So the outnumbered Republicans in the State Senate, who deeply oppose the measure but could not make a difference with their votes, decided to hit the road instead, and gum up the works with their absence. The tactic […]

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The Law©?

No one owns the law, because the law belongs to everyone. It’s a principle that seems so obvious that most people wouldn’t give it a second thought. But that’s what is at issue in Georgia v. Public.Resource.Org, a case about whether the State of Georgia can assert copyright in its annotated state code. This week, […]

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‘I’m Republican. I Never Thought I’d Fight for Medicaid.’

By Ricky Clay, Robin Jordan and Carrie McBane Video by Kendall Ciesemier Millions of Americans fall into the Medicaid gap, earning too much to qualify for Medicaid yet too little to afford private insurance or receive subsidies under the Affordable Care Act. Across the country, 4.5 million would stand to benefit from Medicaid expansion. In […]

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