There’s a lot going on, so the DLCC is helping you catch up on the state legislative stories you might have missed. It’s July 15th; ease into the weekend with the state of the states.
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- DLCC President Jessica Post appeared on MSNBC’s Ayman this weekend to discuss the immediate threat Republican state lawmakers pose to our democracy. Post reminded MSNBC’s national audience that over 700 Republican state lawmakers actively aided and abetted Trump’s attempt to overturn the 2020 presidential election. Many of these lawmakers, including at least 18 who attended the insurrection, still hold legislative office and are increasingly emboldened to use their power to threaten our democracy again in future elections.
- A majority of likely Michigan voters believe the attack on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, was an attempted coup on the U.S. government, according to a recent poll. Yet, the Michigan GOP could field four candidates for the Michigan legislature who have proudly admitted to attending the insurrection: Rep. Matt Maddock (HD-51), Angela Rigas (HD-79), Diane Saber (HD-12), and Andrew Sebolt (HD-102) — underscoring Michigan’s GOP’s cozy relationship with extremism.
- The DLCC, along with its affiliated organizations, raised $6.75 million during its second quarter of fundraising, doubling the number of new donors compared to Q1. Bolstered by outrage over the GOP’s crusade to ban abortion, these numbers mark the committee’s best online fundraising year to date. The DLCC is better resourced than ever before to fight back against GOP extremism and this record success was powered by grassroots donors from all 50 states.
- In a ruling that somehow cited both Shakespeare and Kanye West, the Supreme Court of Wisconsin ruled in favor of limiting the use of most election drop boxes, allowing the GOP to put up unnecessary barriers to the ballot box for partisan gain. State Republicans in Wisconsin have already authorized an unsubstantiated investigation into the 2020 election and are seeking to overhaul the state’s commission that oversees its elections. This ruling only further emboldens more anti-democratic action from the state’s GOP.
- Ohio Republicans are advancing a bill that could require “both sides” of the Holocaust to be taught in public schools. Republican Representative Sarah Fowler Arthur, a sponsor of the bill that would strip teachers of autonomy and police what is taught in classrooms, proposed that there is “value that each individual brings to the table” and went on to cite “the perspective of a German soldier.” You read that correctly: a GOP lawmaker is pushing a bill that could tell children there are two sides to the Holocaust.
- A bill passed by Republicans in the Arizona legislature limiting the recording of police activity became law this week. Recording police is a constitutionally-protected right that has helped uncover countless acts of excessive force and has held police departments accountable, yet the GOP appears motivated to strip the rights of Americans. (P.S. Arizona Republicans knew their law was on shaky legal grounds but passed it anyway)
- Democrats in Massachusetts and New Mexico are stepping up to meet rising costs and put extra cash in the pockets of their constituents. Acting swiftly, Massachusetts Democrats are sending low and middle-income residents a one-time tax rebate between $250 and $500 while eligible New Mexicans can receive rebate checks up to $500 thanks to previous efforts from statehouse Dems.
- Pennsylvania Democratic House Leader Joanna McClinton went viral last week as she took to the House floor to powerfully defend safe and legal abortion access in the face of the GOP advancing a state constitutional amendment that could open the door to banning all abortions in the state. Channeling the anger and frustration of McClinton: When You Silence Us, You Silence Millions of Pennsylvanians the tens of thousands of Pennsylvanians whose health would be put at risk due to a total abortion ban, McClinton said, “You’re silencing millions of voters… you’re silencing all of us.”
- While Republicans do little to address gun violence and keep communities safe, a new law in California spearheaded by legislative Democrats will work to hold gun makers accountable. The new “firearms standard of conduct” will not only require manufacturers to mitigate the sale of firearms to third-party distributors or dangerous black markets, but give victims of gun violence legal recourse if manufacturers fail to adhere to the new safety standard.
- Ohio Republicans have introduced a bill that would codify rights for “all unborn human individuals from the moment of conception.” This extremist bill could not only outlaw nearly all abortions and potentially criminalize miscarriages, but could also put restrictions on fertility clinics, potentially making it difficult to guarantee care for those who want to get pregnant through fertility methods such as IVF. Not so subtly, Ohio Republicans want to simultaneously force and prevent its citizens from giving birth in another blatant attempt to trample on one’s bodily autonomy.
- Pennsylvania Republicans advanced a proposed constitutional amendment last week that would add language to the commonwealth’s constitution stating that it does not guarantee any rights to abortions or public funding of abortions. This amendment lays the groundwork for a future abortion ban, putting Pennsylvania at risk of joining the 26 other states where extreme abortion restrictions are expected or already in place.
- Nobody asked, but former Montana House Majority Leader and current state Senate candidate Brad Tschida took it upon himself to share his gross and widely inaccurate understanding of anatomy with the world: “The womb is the only organ in a woman’s body that serves no specific purpose to her life or well-being…It is truly a sanctuary.” Dehumanizing and dangerous, this kind of language shouldn’t be surprising coming from the party that is actively stripping people of their ability to make personal decisions.