Highlights from the Week
1. On February 2, the United States House of Representatives voted on a resolution to remove Representative Ilhan Omar (D-MN) from the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. This move, sponsored by Representative Max Miller of Ohio, was introduced in response to previous actions by congressional leaders to remove members from committees, in addition to comments Representative Omar had made about the country of Israel. It passed by a vote of 218–211. Click here to see the vote breakdown, bill text, and how your representative voted. Additionally, click here to read a statement from the bill sponsor, Representative Max Miller, here for a statement from Representative Dean Phillips of Minnesota, and here for a statement from Representative Victoria Spartz of Indiana.
2. On the morning of February 6, a pair of earthquakes — magnitude 7.8 and 7.5 — struck the border of Turkey and Syria, leveling thousands of buildings and killing upwards of 12,000 people. President Joe Biden, in a response to the news, authorized the United States to coordinate any needed assistance to both countries. Click here to read a statement from the president.
3. On February 7, President Joe Biden delivered his second State of the Union Address to a joint session of Congress, fulfilling a constitutional duty of the president. The speech touted his record of bipartisanship and listed reforms he wanted to see from Congress, including funding for COVID vaccines and treatments, paid leave, legislation allowing workers to unionize, comprehensive immigration reform, and police reform. Additionally, the Republican Party delivered a rebuttal to the address, choosing newly-elected Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who chose to draw a stark contrast between not only herself and the president, but also between the two major political parties. Click here to read Biden’s address and here to read Governor Sanders’ rebuttal.
By the Elections Research team: Nick, Zachary, Courtney, Seth, and Caleb and Elections intern: Reid
Biographies: Want to learn more about officials who have been sworn in at the federal level? You can see the full list of officials here:
Want to learn more about the leadership in each state legislature? You can see the full leadership rosters here:
Want to learn more about which committees elected officials are a part of? You can see the full list of committees for each state here:
Want to learn more about some special elections happening in 2023? You can see the elections that have been held so far this year here:
By the Officials Research team: Noah, Johanan, Neal, Thomas, Bibi, Craig, and Israel and Officials interns: Brittany, Caroline, and Morgen
Public Statements: 376 statements were added this week. See highlights from the week for notable statements.
States: 25 new votes were added.
Minnesota passed HF 1 which was signed into law by the governor; it seeks to establish abortion protections as a state constitutional right. This bill establishes: the definition of reproductive health care, that every individual who becomes pregnant has a fundamental right to continue the pregnancy and give birth or obtain an abortion, and to make autonomous decisions about how to exercise this fundamental right. The bill also prohibits local governments in Minnesota from limiting such rights.
Montana’s Senate passed SB 154 which seeks to repeal abortion privacy protections from the state constitution. This bill specifies that the constitutional right of individual privacy does not apply to abortion.
North Dakota’s House passed HB 1171 which seeks to prohibit coerced or forced abortions and establishes a penalty. This bill defines abortion, force, coerce, threat, and classifies forcing or coercing an abortion as Class C felony. Please click here to view these definitions and bill text.
Special Interest Groups:
This year to date, the SIGS team has entered 1,360 ratings and 359 endorsements for candidates.