Trumpy’s Machine: Speaking of North Carolina (don’t I always, basically?), earlier this week, the Trump administration made an unprecedented request of 44 of the state’s election boards.
- Specifically, that request was Turn over all your voting and registration data for the past five years kthx.
- Even more troubling, the request was made through a U.S. Attorney on behalf of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
ALL YOUR VOTE ARE BELONG TO ICE
- Immediate reactions concerned the possible compromising of the privacy of millions of North Carolinians, but justice experts worried the information could lead to voter intimidation and suppression.
- On Thursday, the Trump administration backed off … a little, anyway.
- The U.S. Attorney informed the state election boards that the deadline for the requested materials has been extended to January 2019—after this November’s elections.
Still, though. Not great.
Cannonball End-Run: Republican lawmakers in Michigan have revived one of their favorite (and sneakiest) tricks:
- Afraid a ballot measure you don’t like will be approved by voters?
- Then pass the same law before November, which removes the measure from the ballot, and then amend the law in the lame duck session after the election to make it more to your taste!
Some call it “bait and switch,” but I prefer “undo and screw.”
- This week, GOP lawmakers applied this little maneuver to two proposals that had received the hundreds of thousands of signatures required to place them on the ballot this fall:
- Raising the minimum wage to $12 per hour, and
- Requiring employers to provide paid sick leave to their workers.
- The new laws, which currently mirror the ballot measures, won’t go into effect until March 2019, and Republican have already publicly stated their intent to gut them.
- The laws passed by the legislature can be amended via a simple majority vote.
- If they’d passed at the ballot box, a three-quarters supermajority would have been required to amend them—and despite their best efforts via gerrymandering, Michigan Republicans just don’t have those numbers in the legislature.
- And even if Democrats flip one or both chambers in November, Republicans still have plenty of time to gut these bills before the new legislature is sworn in in January 2019.
Gat-her: Okay, let’s end on some good news.
Specifically, some details on how many more women are going to hold power in statehouses after this fall.
Fun fact: Women have won 2,669 major party nominations for state legislative seats this year.
- In Michigan, the state Senate is destined to go from four women members to at least eight (based on four safe Democratic seats, two safe Republican seats, and women running against each other in two other districts).
- All told, women are running in 25 of 38 Senate districts.
- The previous high-water mark for women in the Michigan Senate was after the 2004 election—12 women senators served in the following legislative session.
- In the House, women are on the ballot in 77 of 110 districts.
- Of those, 39 seats will likely be won by women (because they’re running in safe seats or in woman vs. woman contests).
- Another eight races are considered tossups between men and women candidates.
- The record for women in the House was a little more recent—33 women were elected to the lower chamber in 2016.
Well, it’s been a week. I hereby give you leave to take tomorrow off for a Burt Reynolds movie marathon. Just print this out and show it to your boss, I bet she’ll ask to join you.
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