Highlights from the Week
1. Hurricane Ian hit the southwest coast of Florida on Wednesday, September 28, leaving widespread damage in its wake and cities all along the coast underwater. Governor Ron DeSantis has said that Hurricane Ian will go down in history as one of the worst hurricanes to hit Florida in the history of the state. President Biden made calls to the mayor of Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Sarasota, and Charlotte County, Florida, to inform them that they have the support of the federal government in their efforts to recover from the storm. Click here to read a letter from Senators Rick Scott and Marco Rubio calling for aid to Florida, or click here to read President Biden’s comments about Hurricane Ian on Wednesday.
2. Russian President Vladamir Putin has begun appealing to Ukrainian citizens living in the eastern part of the country as he moves forward with plans to annex those regions. A referendum was held on Tuesday in four Ukrainian regions, and the results were overwhelmingly supportive of Russian annexation, although the international community and democracy watchdogs have largely rejected the referendum as an illegal move to portray the Russian government in a positive light. Click here to see all statements from members of Congress regarding the conflict in Ukraine, or click here to see President Biden’s statement on the referendum.
3. The DART spacecraft, operated by NASA, was intentionally crashed into an asteroid on September 26 to simulate the effects that an asteroid impact might have on earth in order to best prepare for the scenario. DART, or the Double Asteroid Redirection Test, is a NASA plan to launch a spacecraft to circle the sun for ten months before crashing into Dimorphos, an asteroid seven million miles from Earth. Click here to read all mentions of NASA in statements by members of Congress, or click here to see all mentions of NASA by President Biden.
By the Elections Research team (Noah, Courtney, Seth, Nick, Caleb, & Anthony) and Elections Research Interns (Torin, Tayelon, Juvencio, Maggie, Francesca, and Joelle)
Want to learn more about the candidates who are running in Massachussett’s general election? You can see the full list of candidates by office below:
Want to learn more about the candidates who are running in Missouri’s general election? You can see the full list of candidates by office below:
Want to learn more about the candidates running in Ohio’s state legislative 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 ahead of the general election? You can see the full list of candidates, their responses, and response rates running in various states by office below:
By the Officials Research team: Thomas, Bibi, Johanan, Neal, Jake, Craig, Israel, and Katie
Public Statements: 1,521 statements were added this week. See highlights from the week for notable statements.
States: 20 new votes were added.
The California state Senate passed AB 2799, which regulates the ability of prosecutors to use rap lyrics as evidence in trials. The bill encourages the courts to consider “creative expression” and imagination when evaluating lyrics alluding to violence.
The governor of Louisiana signed HB 729 into law, banning the practice of publicly publishing mugshots for people booked into jail after being arrested. The police are allowed to disseminate the photos if the person is a fugitive, it may aid the protection of others (such as in sex offender cases), or the individual pleads guilty. The bill also explicitly bans the practice of “pay for removal” websites which require a person to pay for their booking photo to be taken down.
Washington signed HB 1356 into law, prohibiting the use of Native symbols by public schools. The bill declares that racially derogatory school mascots, logos, or team names are antithetical to the public school mission of providing an equal education to all.
Federal Legislation: 7 new votes
Violent Incident Clearance and Technological Investigative Methods Act
Special Interest Groups:
There were 492 endorsements and 0 rating scorecards released to the live web this week, which can be viewed here (organized by group). This year to date, the SIGs team has rated 83,965 candidates and entered endorsements for 30,500 candidates.