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Recent Elections & Politics Posts

Latest Civil Rights Posts

 

West Virginia School District Sued For Forcing Students To Attend Religious Assembly During School Hours

Brief #183 – Civil Rights
By Rod Maggay

On February 2, 2022 two homeroom classrooms at Huntington High School in the Cabell County School District in southwestern West Virginia were brought to a school assembly. The assembly was hosted by Nik Walker of Nik Walker Ministries. Nik Walker is an evangelical preacher and his group had been hosting revival events in the area with the purpose of exposing persons to Jesus Christ and Christianity.

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The Need for a Federal Statute To Combat Domestic Terrorism

Brief #180 – Civil Rights
By Rodney A. Maggay

On January 11, 2022 Assistant Attorney General Matthew G. Olsen testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee that he has decided to create a new specialized domestic terrorism unit “to augment our existing approach” and “to ensure that these cases are properly handled and effectively coordinated” across the country. Previously, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the National Security Division (NSD) did not have a group or unit dedicated to only domestic terrorism cases.

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Secret Unit in U.S. Customs and Border Patrol Agency Raises Freedom of the Press Issues

Brief #179 – Civil Rights
By Rodney A. Maggay

On December 11, 2001 investigative journalist Jana Winter published an explosive article on Yahoo News that exposed a secret unit within the Counter Network Division of the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) agency. At the heart of the disturbing story is that a CBP employee staffed to the secret unit was authorized to investigate a national security journalist named Ali Watkins with regards to her confidential sources for the source of her work.

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The Future of Abortion Rights In The United States

Brief #178 – Civil Rights
By Rodney A. Maggay

In 1973 the United States Supreme Court decided the landmark case Roe v. Wade. That case ruled that a woman’s choice to have an abortion is protected by the U.S. Constitution. The basis of the ruling by the Court was that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides a “right to privacy” which includes the choice to have an abortion. The case then laid out a balancing test that focused on each of the three trimesters of a woman’s pregnancy.

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Recent Elections & Politics Posts

 

The New Composition of the Supreme Court

Brief #33 – Elections and Politics
By Inijah Quadri

The Supreme Court is composed of nine justices. The newest justice, Ketanji Brown Jackson, was appointed by President Biden on February 25, 2022. This brief discusses how the composition of the Supreme Court has changed over time, and what the implications of its new makeup are for the future of our democracy.

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Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Wants His Own Paramilitary Force

Brief #32 – Elections & Politics
By Ibrahim Sultan

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is looking to create the state’s own private civilian military force that would operate outside of federal control. The announcement came during a broader plan to increase funding to Florida’s National Guard. This additional $3.5 million tax payer funded plan calls for a new state-run force that would be added in addition to the already existing Florida National Guard and state police.

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The U.S. House Select Committee Investigation of the January 6 Attack on the Capitol: Part 5

Brief #31 – Elections and Politics
By Erika Shannon

There have been many changes on our nation’s home front since the January 6th insurrection in the U.S. Capitol; and some of these changes are being made to ensure that events like that will never occur again, on either side. Chairperson Bennie Thompson and his US House Select Committee panel have been investigating the events that transpired on January 6th with one mission in mind: preserve the democratic process. There have been endless subpoenas, documents submitted, and interviews, so what is still to come in this lengthy process?

Of course, there are the matters of getting people to cooperate who have been unwilling to do so. This includes people like former president Donald Trump and his closest cohorts, such as Steve Bannon and Mark Meadows. Earlier this month, Bannon was hit with a federal indictment and charged with two counts of contempt of Congress. This came after he refused to provide testimony or documents to the January 6th Select Committee. His defiance is seen as extreme due to the fact that he was not willing to even appear before investigators under subpoena, even if to assert other alleged privileges. It is seen as a move that may prompt others to follow suit and do their best to derail the investigation.

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The U.S. House Select Committee Investigation of the January 6 Attack on the Capitol: Part 3

Brief #30 – Elections & Politics
By Erika Shannon

As the investigation into the January 6th Capitol Riots continues, it is becoming clear that getting to the bottom of that day’s events will be no easy task. There were already hurdles to overcome with the formation of a committee to investigate the day’s events; now that the committee is working towards piecing together what truly happened, more obstacles stand in the way.

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Florida Gov. DeSantis Anti-Immigrant Policies

Brief #29 – Florida Gov. DeSantis Anti-Immigrant Policies
By Ibrahim Sultan

In recent months, the United States has seen large numbers of people attempting to cross into its borders from as far away as Afghanistan and as near as Haiti. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has taken issue with the Biden administration’s handling of the border situations and has accused it of having lax immigration policies that have allowed in too many undocumented migrants. A problem he feels puts Americans and Floridians in danger.

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Numbers and Power: Congress and News Media

Brief #28 – Elections and Politics
By Rosalind Gottfried

Congress, responsible for policies and legislation, and the news media, responsible for dissemination of information and opinion, are two of the most powerful institutions in the country. How do they fare in terms of parity on race, ethnicity, and gender? The 117th Congress is more diverse than previous Congresses but only slightly more than the 116th. Congress is 77% white while the general population is 60% white. Women comprise 24% of all seats though women are more than half of the American population.

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Who is Florida Governor Ron Desantis? 

Brief #131 – Elections and Politics
By Ibrahim Sultan

The conservative-leaning state of Florida which has not elected a Democratic governor since 1999 is currently being headed by its 46th governor Ron Desantis. Before being elected Desantis joined the U.S. Navy from 2004 to 2010, serving as a judge advocate general (JAG) officer advising troops in Iraq and at Guantanamo Bay. He represented Florida’s 6th congressional district for three terms until his election as Governor over Democratic rival Andrew Gillum in 2019. 

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A Case for Getting Rid of the Filibuster

Brief #26 – Elections and Politics
By Ryan Campbell

The filibuster is a political procedure in the US Senate (as well as other governmental bodies) where a Senator or Senators may speak for as long as they want on any topic that they choose (i.e. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) once filibustered by reading from Green Eggs and Ham). This will allow the party (or individual) to essentially run out the clock and deny the party moving in favor of the legislation an opportunity to ever have said legislation voted on. This can only be broken if 60 senators vote for “cloture,” or a motion to bring debate to an end.

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Prospects for the Biden Agenda

Brief #25 – Elections and Politics
By William Bourque

In this series, USRENEW NEWS Reporter William Bourque examines the feasibility  of implementing  the different components of President Biden’s ambitious policy agenda. In Part 2 of the  series we examine prospects for passage of Biden proposals in the areas of infrastructure and immigration.

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