ChrisWeigant.com

Archive of Articles for August, 2022

Alaska's Ranked-Choice Voting Put To The Test

[ Posted Tuesday, August 16th, 2022 – 15:28 UTC ]

Alaska is trying out two new ballot innovations today, which is further complicated by the fact that voters will be using each new innovation once -- for the same office. Representative Don Young died suddenly earlier this year, which means a special election to fill the remainder of his term is happening today as well as a primary election for the term which begins next January. There was an earlier primary for the special election, which was the first time Alaskans used their new "top 4" open-primary system (sometimes called a "jungle primary"). And today's special election will be the first time they'll vote using a "ranked-choice" ballot, where voters don't just get one static vote, instead they get to list the candidates in whatever ranking they wish: first choice, second choice, etc....

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Georgia Targets Rudy

[ Posted Monday, August 15th, 2022 – 15:24 UTC ]

Rudy Giuliani, one-time self-styled "America's mayor," is now the target of a criminal investigation in Atlanta, Georgia. He's not alone in this either, since already at least 17 other people have been informed that they too are targets of the investigation into exactly what happened after the 2020 election. Included in those 17 are two Republican state senators and the head of the state's Republican Party. The investigation is fairly wide-ranging, looking not only into Donald Trump and his minions trying to get every Georgia Republican holding office from the governor on down to somehow throw out enough votes for Joe Biden to allow Trump to proclaim he won, but also into the "fake electors" scheme where a group of Republicans tried to defraud the United States Congress and the American people into believing that Georgia had officially gone for Trump (when it hadn't). That's a lot to cover and it is why so many people are now targets.

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Friday Talking Points -- Lock Him Up!

[ Posted Friday, August 12th, 2022 – 16:39 UTC ]

The irony is delicious, we cannot deny it. A man who rose to power by leading chants of: "Lock her up!" against his political opponent (for mishandling classified documents -- a man who later signed a law making the offense a felony with up to five years' prison time) is now in the process of being hoist by his own petard. So it's been a rather schadenfreude-y kind of week.

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Program Note

[ Posted Thursday, August 11th, 2022 – 20:20 UTC ]

Sorry, there will be no column today. Our power was off from 8:30 in the morning until the end of the day, so I had no internet access at all. I'll be spending tonight getting tomorrow's column ready (by raking through the week's news) so check back tomorrow when (hopefully) regular service will [...]

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Things Are Getting Better

[ Posted Wednesday, August 10th, 2022 – 14:22 UTC ]

As we head into the dog days of August, Democrats have finally gotten some good news to spread, out on the campaign trail. Legislatively, things are definitely looking up, after Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema finally relented and allowed major portions of President Joe Biden's agenda to head to his desk. But it wasn't just the reconciliation bill, there has been a flurry of bills passing, from allowing Sweden and Finland into NATO to helping America's veterans who were exposed to toxic burn pits during their service. Democrats in Congress are showing that they can indeed get things done, with or without the help of the obstructionist Republicans. But the good news doesn't end there, because the economic picture is getting better as well.

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Will Trump Jump?

[ Posted Tuesday, August 9th, 2022 – 15:32 UTC ]

After hearing the bombshell news that the Federal Bureau of Investigation just executed a search warrant at Donald Trump's residence in Florida, my immediate reaction was to wonder whether this will be the trigger that prompts Trump to immediately declare his candidacy for the 2024 presidential race. Will Trump jump in the race now? It seems likelier than not, and certainly likelier than it did a day ago.

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Now Get Out There And Sell It!

[ Posted Monday, August 8th, 2022 – 15:17 UTC ]

The day many of us thought would never happen is here. Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema finally allowed President Joe Biden and the entire rest of the Democratic Party to actually get some good things done. A budget reconciliation bill has -- almost miraculously and at the last possible second -- passed the United States Senate. The House is on vacation, but they're being forced to come back to Washington anyway for a vote this Friday on the Inflation Reduction Act. It should be on Biden's desk in time for a triumphant signing ceremony by the weekend. Victory is at hand.

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Friday Talking Points -- The Midterm Ground Shifts In Two Big Ways

[ Posted Friday, August 5th, 2022 – 16:37 UTC ]

There were two major events in politics this week which will have a profound effect on the upcoming midterm campaigns. The first was the stunning victory in the Kansas primary of the anti-forced-birth position on an abortion referendum -- which passed with a jaw-dropping 59-41 percent margin in a very red state. The second was Senate Democrats finally achieving unity by all agreeing to the "Inflation Reduction Act" budget reconciliation bill. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has refused to let the Senate begin their month-long August vacation and is planning the first vote on the bill tomorrow, with all the other arcane floor events to follow, so the final passage could come early next week.

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The Political Earthquake In Kansas

[ Posted Thursday, August 4th, 2022 – 14:56 UTC ]

Kansas is not generally known for its earthquakes, but what happened there Tuesday night has had that effect on politics -- because it truly has shaken things to their core. For the first time since Roe v. Wade was overturned, people actually got to vote on the issue of abortion and women's rights. And the results were nothing short of astounding.

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We Need More Jon Stewarts

[ Posted Wednesday, August 3rd, 2022 – 17:13 UTC ]

Jon Stewart, a television comedian, just did an amazing and powerful thing. He actually caused Senate Republicans to feel shame.

In this day and age, that is a rarity. The Republican Party has been taught many bad habits by Donald Trump, but one of the worst of all is utter shamelessness, which I would describe (politically) as the inability of your fellow citizens' opinions to sway yours in the least. Trump's "come Hell or high water" attitude and his absolute refusal to ever admit he was wrong about the slightest thing (see: Sharpiegate, et al) has caused Republicans like Ted Cruz (a shameless politician if there ever was one, even before Trump appeared on the scene) to completely divorce themselves from public opinion. They will just insist that down is up, that black is white, and that everyone else in the world is wrong while they have a secret line to the absolute truth (with zero evidence to back it up, of course).

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