Saturday, November 26, 2022

Play

An investigative probe into how rules written for distressed rust belt property may benefit a select few; Small Business Saturday highlights local Economies; FL nonprofit helps offset the high cost of insulin.

Play

A Supreme Court case could have broad implications for the future of U.S. elections, results show voters rejected election deniers in many statewide races, and the concession phone call may be a thing of the past.

Play

A water war in Southwest Utah has ranchers and Native tribes concerned, federal solar subsidies could help communities transition to renewable energy, and Starbucks workers attempt to unionize.

New Urgency to Pass Voting-Rights Legislation Aimed at Texas

Play

Tuesday, January 4, 2022   

Leaders in the U.S. Senate have announced plans to vote this month on a change to filibuster rules, hoping to pass voting-rights legislation they say is needed to protect democracy.

Democrats contended since the 2020 election, Republican-led states such as Texas have passed laws that could subvert future elections. Last month, the Department of Justice sued over the state's new redistricting maps, arguing they deny Black and Latino voters an equal opportunity to participate in the voting process and elect representatives of their choice.

Dr. Richard D. Pineda, associate professor and chair of the Department of Communication at the University of Texas-El Paso, explained how drawing maps can affect the outcome of elections.

"If you can isolate a population that you think is going to lean one way politically, and it also overlaps with ethnic-identify markers, then I think you see a really tremendous impact."

The election and voting-rights package is stalled in the evenly split 50-50 Senate, and Democrats have been unable to agree over potential rule changes to reduce the necessary 60-vote threshold.

Texas' explosive population growth in the past 10 years meant it gained two new congressional districts based on census data. The state grew by nearly four million residents, with an estimated 95% of the growth due to Latino and Black residents.

Admitting "elections have consequences," Pineda nonetheless called the gerrymandering in Texas "outlandish."

"At a minimum, it means your representatives are stretched pretty thin," Pineda argued. "But in a more nefarious way it suggests that the political system is out to leverage partisanship over representation."

At the same time, Pineda is skeptical the Justice Department lawsuit against Texas will have a definitive impact. He noted the longer the legal fight is drawn out, the harder it will become to change the already-approved maps. He added, however, the lawsuit could delay Texas' March 1 primary election.

Disclosure: Fair Representation in Redistricting contributes to our fund for reporting on Civic Engagement. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
During open enrollment for 2022 coverage, Georgia saw a record number of individuals, more than 700,000, sign up for health insurance. (Rawpixel.com/Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

Open enrollment for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act is already underway, and ends on Jan. 15. More than 1.3 million Georgians do …


Social Issues

Holiday shoppers this week have no shortage of options with Small Business Saturday being observed on Nov. 26. Sandwiched between Black Friday and …

Health and Wellness

The American Heart Association has developed a series of videos to educate women about heart disease. The Red Chair Series is a four-episode series …


Chris Powers stands in front of the Land Bank lot that he tried to bid on in Southern Ohio. (Eye on Ohio)

Social Issues

By Lucia Walinchus for Eye on Ohio.Broadcast version by Nadia Ramlagan for Ohio News Connection Collaboration reporting for the Ohio Center for Invest…

Social Issues

While many Iowa families gather through this weekend to celebrate Thanksgiving in traditional ways with food and family, thousands of people take to …

The EPA claims that the EES Coke Battery plant has emitted thousands of tons of sulfur dioxide annually beyond its permitted limit of 2,100 tons. (Wikipedia)

Environment

Members of a Detroit-area community are intervening in an Environmental Protection Agency lawsuit against a DTE Energy subsidiary charged with dumping…

Health and Wellness

A bill headed to President Joe Biden's desk addresses a long-standing problem for domestic violence survivors, ending their ties to their abusers' …

Environment

Oregon is home to a plethora of rivers, but those waterways are not always accessible to every community. A new video series highlights how …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021