All posts tagged: legislators

Nebraska legislators buck Trump by blocking Electoral College vote change — for now

Nebraska legislators buck Trump by blocking Electoral College vote change — for now

[ad_1] Nebraska legislators on Wednesday night blocked a late effort to change how the state allocates its Electoral College votes, despite public pressure from former President Donald Trump to shift to a winner-take-all system that would likely benefit him in the fall. The measure fell short, 8-36, in a procedural vote. While it’s possible supporters could take another stab at advancing the proposal, there remain serious hurdles as the legislative session draws to a close, and it’s unclear whether the proposal has enough support to get across the finish line and become law. Nebraska currently doles out three of its five electoral votes to the presidential candidate who wins each of its three congressional districts. In practice, that puts the competitive 2nd District in the Omaha area in play, even though Republicans typically win the statewide vote easily. Wednesday night’s failed attempt to change the law to award all the state’s Electoral College votes to the statewide winner leaves the fate of the proposal in doubt with a few days left in the legislative session. …

California Legislators Push Bill to Change Law Around Nazi-looted Art

California Legislators Push Bill to Change Law Around Nazi-looted Art

[ad_1] California legislators have introduced a bill intended to give Holocaust survivors and their heirs a greater chance of recovering artworks stolen, or sold under duress, during periods of political oppression. Assemblyman Jesse Gabriel (D-Encino), co-chair of the California Legislative Jewish Caucus, who has led the legislative effort, told the Los Angeles Times that it was inspired by a ruling this January that determined that Madrid’s Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum could keep a Camille Pissarro painting taken from its Jewish owner by the Nazi party.  Related Articles “It immediately made sense to me that this was a unique opportunity to correct a historical injustice and make sure that something like this doesn’t happen again,” Gabriel said. “Respectfully, we think that the 9th Circuit got it wrong, and this law is going to make that crystal clear.” He added that the bill has bipartisan support. The keenly followed case of the Pissarro, titled Rue Saint Honore, apres midi, effet de pluie (Rue Saint Honore, Afternoon, Rain Effect) and depicting a rainy Paris street, has bounced between California courts for nearly two …

US legislators vote to ban TikTok unless it severs ties with China

US legislators vote to ban TikTok unless it severs ties with China

[ad_1] TikTok faces a potential ban in the US Thiago Prudêncio/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images US politicians have voted to ban popular video-sharing app TikTok unless its owner, technology company ByteDance, sells it. The US House of Representatives voted by a margin of 352 to 65 to approve the app-restricting bill on 13 March. The legislation will require ByteDance, which has its headquarters in China but is incorporated in the Cayman Islands, to sell TikTok within six months due to concerns over the company’s links to China. The bill still needs to pass another vote in the US Senate before it heads to the desk of President Joe Biden, who previously told reporters he would sign it into law. While a smaller committee was considering the “Protecting Americans from Foreign Controlled Applications Act” bill last week, TikTok users received notifications through the app encouraging them to contact their public representatives to protest the potential ban. Despite being bombarded with messages, legislators passed the bill through committee on 7 March, approving it for a full vote …

Delaware, Connecticut Legislators Propose Anti-Book Ban Measures

Delaware, Connecticut Legislators Propose Anti-Book Ban Measures

[ad_1] “That would make sure that we could not be inundated with all kinds of bans on materials in the libraries that we have been seeing all over the country because we would be considered a place of public accommodation,” said Kay Bowes, president of the Friends of Delaware Libraries in an interview with Delaware Public Radio. “So there could be no banning or very little.” The bill was sponsored by House Member Cyndie Romer, with cosponsorship from Senator Laura V. Sturgeon, Senator Marie Pinkney, Representative Valerie Longhurst, Representative Paul S. Baumbach, Senator Kyra Hoffner, and Representative Nnamdi O. Chukwuocha. The American Library Association recorded 0 attempts to restrict access to books in Delaware between January and August 2023 alone, with 0 book titles challenged. PEN America likewise recorded 0 book bans in school districts during the 2022-2023 school year. As positive as it is to see zeros for both of these counts, they likely do not represent reality–book bans are happening and not being reported and/or the counts like these never include rampant silent censorship bills like …

As water rates soar, legislators seek funding for assistance

As water rates soar, legislators seek funding for assistance

[ad_1] In California and across the country, household water rates have been rising as utilities invest to upgrade aging infrastructure, secure future supplies and meet treatment standards for clean drinking water. As monthly water bills continue to increase, growing numbers of customers have been struggling to pay. New federal legislation would establish a water assistance program to help low-income families pay their bills and prevent shutoffs of water service. The bill, introduced by Democratic Sen. Alex Padilla, would make permanent a federal program that Congress authorized in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic. The program provided more than $1 billion in assistance, but it’s expiring. “Access to clean, safe drinking water is a fundamental right. And you shouldn’t have to forgo that just because you’re low-income,” Padilla said. “And you certainly shouldn’t have to decide between paying the water bill versus keeping the lights on, versus paying the rent.” Aggressive and impactful reporting on climate change, the environment, health and science. Padilla said the Low-Income Household Water Assistance Program, or LIHWAP, has proved successful in preventing …

NSS calls on Manx legislators to abolish automatic seat for bishop

NSS calls on Manx legislators to abolish automatic seat for bishop

[ad_1] The National Secular Society has called on Manx lawmakers to abolish a bishop’s automatic seat in the legislature. The Church of England bishop of Sodor and Man sits and votes by right in the Legislative Council, the upper branch of the Isle of Man’s parliament, Tynwald. The arrangements in Tynwald echo those in Westminster, where 26 Church of England bishops sit as of right in the House of Lords and prayers are said in both houses before sittings. A consultation is being held on the bishop’s role in Tynwald, following the successful second reading of the Isle of Man Constitution Bill 2023 in December. If passed, the bill would remove the bishop’s vote. The NSS urged legislators to use a parliamentary override if the Legislative Council attempted to block the bill. Bishop’s voting powers “an anomaly in a modern, liberal democracy” In a submission to all 24 Members of the House of Keys (MHKs), Tynwald’s directly elected lower branch, the NSS called on MHKs to pass the bill, saying the privileged position of “one …

New Mexico Legislators Seek Endowment to Bolster Autonomous Tribal Education Programs

New Mexico Legislators Seek Endowment to Bolster Autonomous Tribal Education Programs

[ad_1] SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico legislators would create a unique educational endowment of at least $50 million to help Native American communities create their own student programs, including efforts to teach and preserve Indigenous languages, under a proposal endorsed Thursday by the state House. The bill from Democratic legislators with ties to tribal communities including the Navajo Nation and smaller Native American pueblos won unanimous House approval on a 68-0 vote, advancing to the state Senate for consideration. Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham recently voiced support for the initiative. Sponsors say the endowment would help reverse the vestiges of forced assimilation of Native American children, including the legacy of at U.S.-backed boarding schools, and fulfill the state’s commitment to Native American students in the wake of a landmark state court ruling. “What this does is it pushes back against 200-plus years of federal policies that sought to erase Native Americans from this nation and says, ‘Well, we know how to school, to teach our children best,’ ” said Rep. Derrick Lente, a resident …

Mississippi Legislators Approve Incentives for a Factory That Would Make EV Batteries

Mississippi Legislators Approve Incentives for a Factory That Would Make EV Batteries

[ad_1] JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi lawmakers on Thursday gave broad, bipartisan approval to state incentives for a factory that will manufacture batteries for electric vehicles — a project that promises 2,000 jobs with an average salary of about $66,000. After legislators voted, Republican Gov. Tate Reeves named the four companies involved. Accelera by Cummins, Daimler Truck and PACCAR, which manufacture big trucks, will each own 30% of the project. A China-based lithium battery maker, EVE Energy Co., Ltd., will own 10%. The companies intend to invest about $1.9 billion for the plant in Marshall County, near the Tennessee state line, and it would be the second-largest corporate investment in Mississippi history, Reeves said. “For far too many years, technology was developed in the United States, and that technology was taken to China and manufactured in China,” Reeves said during a news conference in the state Capitol. “The reality is, we need to bring jobs back to America.” U.S. manufacturing of EV batteries is accelerating as automakers transition to electric vehicles. The Inflation Reduction Act …

US state legislators race to enact AI laws before 2024 primaries

US state legislators race to enact AI laws before 2024 primaries

[ad_1] US primary elections begin next week, and state legislatures are scrambling to enact laws that will prevent, or at least limit, the impact of artificial intelligence (AI) and AI-generated deepfakes, reports the New York Times. After a shock result in the Slovakian election late last year, possibly a result of an AI-generated fake recording of a candidate buying votes, lawmakers elsewhere in the world are taking steps to prevent this from happening in their countries. The USA, the UK, India, and various EU countries all have elections this year, so getting a handle on the issue of AI is critical. At present, only five states have enacted legislation on AI and deepfakes: Texas, Minnesota, Washington, California, and Michigan. However, 12 other states have introduced bills, with more sure to follow. Where legislation is in place, there has been strong bipartisan support. There has also been some effort to introduce bills at a federal level, including a bipartisan collaboration between Democrat Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, and Republican Josh Hawley of Missouri. The president of Public …

Putting meat on the bones of data – how legislators define research evidence – Evidence & Policy Blog

Putting meat on the bones of data – how legislators define research evidence – Evidence & Policy Blog

[ad_1] Elizabeth Day This blog post is based on the Evidence & Policy article, ‘How legislators define research evidence’. When people ask about my research area, I answer that I study how policymakers use research evidence. Their response always follows a similar thread: ‘That sounds hard’ and ‘Ha! Do they even know what research is?’ These reactions align with a broader opinion in the United States that elected officials are clueless when it comes to using research evidence in the decision-making process. Yet there are plenty of examples in research, legislation, and regulations where policymakers do use research in their work. My colleague Karen Bogenschneider and I wondered if this mismatch – assuming policymakers don’t use research when there are examples that they do – might have to do with a jingle-jangle problem: Do researchers and legislators actually mean the same thing when they say ‘research evidence’? We wanted to dig into this question by getting right to the source, so in this Evidence and Policy article we asked legislators directly, ‘How do you define …