Highlights from the Week
1. On Wednesday, August 25, President Biden announced that he would be canceling $10,000 in student loan debt for Americans making less than $125,000 per year. Student debt forgiveness was a central point of the Biden's presidential campaign, and the administration has been pausing payments for borrowers during the COVID-19 pandemic. To see Biden’s statement on the debt cancellation, click here. To see all statements on higher education from members of Congress, click here.
2. Earlier this spring, Michigan prosecutors failed to get convictions for 6 men charged with orchestrating a plot to kidnap the governor of Michigan. This week, two of those men were found guilty on charges of conspiracy to commit kidnapping and conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction. The case faced criticism for the complicated relationships that undercover FBI agents formed with the defendants, and the defense argued that FBI agents entrapped their clients and encouraged the kidnapping to be carried out. Click here to see Governor Whitmer’s statement on the verdict, or click here to see President Biden’s October 2020 statement in response to the initial arrests.
3. The Trump residence at Mar-a-Lago was raided a couple of weeks ago, and new evidence from the National Archives suggests that the ex-president took more than 700 documents with him when he departed office, including several national security and highly classified documents. The Presidential Records Act was established in 1978 to avoid mistakes that occurred when President Nixon attempted to destroy paper and tape records when leaving office. To see Chairman of the House Committee on Intelligence Adam Shiff’s comments on the documents, click here. Click here to read a letter from Republican Senators Rick Scott and James Lankford on the Mar-a-Lago raid.
By the Elections Research team (Noah, Courtney, Seth, Nick, Caleb, & Anthony) and Elections Interns (Ephriam, Liam, and Muzhi)
Elections: Want to learn more about the results from the primary election in Florida this past week? Please click on the office you would like to view below:
Want to learn more about where to register to vote? Click here to select your state to view your voter registration deadlines, qualifications, and requirements ahead of the general election.
Biographies: Want to learn more about the candidates who are running in Idaho's general election? You can see the full list of candidates by office below:
If you want to learn more about a candidate, click on a candidate and go to their ‘Bio’ tab to learn more.
Want to learn more about the candidates who are running in California’s congressional general election? You can see the full list of candidates running here. If you want to learn more about a candidate, click on a candidate and go to their ‘Bio’ tab to learn more.
Issue Positions/Political Courage Test:
Want to learn more about the candidates who are currently being tested and their responses to the Political Courage Test? You can see the full list of candidates, their responses, and response rates running for various offices below:
By the Officials Research team: Thomas, Bibi, Johanan, Neal, Jake, Craig, Israel, Wyatt, and Katie
Public Statements: 1,743 statements were added this week. See highlights from the week for notable statements.
States: 47 new votes were added, 10 bills were updated with new information.
The governor of Oregon signed a bill intended to repeal restrictions on police use of tear gas. The restriction was put into place during the 2020 BLM unrest in Oregon, and all but 4 Representatives voted to repeal.
Rhode Island became the 19th state to legalize the sale and consumption of marijuana for personal and recreational use. The bill, signed by the governor, took effect May 25, 2022.
The state of Texas adopted new penalties for any municipality that passes police department budgets that are less than previous years, describing those municipalities as “defunding municipalities.” Those local municipalities face financial penalties and legal action from the state and are required to prove that the funding reduction was based on a reduction in total budget.
Federal Legislation: No new votes
Special Interest Groups:
There were 47 endorsements and 16 ratings released to the live web this week, which can be viewed here (organized by group). This year to date, the SIGs team has rated 83,340 candidates and entered endorsements for 22,774 candidates.