I have usually thought of Congress as the most powerful branch, but most agree that title belongs to the Executive. (Also, the Legislative Branch is explained in Article I while the Executive is in Article II.) I always liked the fact that the aggregation, combination, and/or chaos of the House and the Senate is a good indicator of where the American people, for better or worse. Unfortunately, our electoral system usually biases/skews that representation due to redistricting, state size, or other factors. As it stands now, the Republican wave within the state houses and the governors’ mansions allowed them to unilaterally create districts to maximize the amount of Republicans for the upcoming decade, all else equal. (Look at USC’s Annenberg Center’s ReDistricting Game to get a fuller understanding of that particular process.) Of course Democrats did the same, but they really only had one state to make that difference in Illinois (Chicago Tribune). With the 2014 elections coming, no serious political analyst sees Democrats making a gain, especially in the midterm of the 2nd term of a President as evidenced in the below (President Clinton’s 2nd term was an exception to the rule).
This month has been the first this year, at least it seems to be, in which both the national and my adopted state’s (Indiana’s) legislatures are now out-of-session. Of course, there are many political scandals and breaking news throughout the country such as Continue reading
I have to admit, agriculture is probably not even on my Top 10 issues to follow on a national level. When I lived in Southern California, it wasn’t really something that I even saw. Now that I’m here in Indiana, I have tried to pay more attention to the issues affecting my state more than others, and agriculture is definitely one of them. Continue reading
With the end of elections, the people who we elected and have been or about to be inaugurated will be making decisions based on why they were elected. To me, I’m a little confused as to why there is all this consternation regarding the recent right-to-work laws that have recently passed in the state I currently reside in, Indiana, and our northern neighbor of Michigan. Some are outraged to the recent decisions, which is quite understandable. However, voters apparently want these decisions, for better or for worse. There is something to be said that private and/or public sector jobs are being threatened either by less job positions (via unionization) or lower wages and benefits (via right-to-work). No one should be surprised, though, that when you vote a supermajority in the state senate and super majority in the state house (Michigan) and an increase to a 2/3 majority in both state houses (Indiana) of Republicans, you are going to get a Republican kind of state. Outrage may be justified, but voters do not want that.
You get what you pay for. In politics, you get what you vote for.
- Michigan Right-To-Work Bill Approved By Republican-Dominated House (huffingtonpost.com)
- Michigan Passes Public Sector Right-To-Work Law Amid Protests (detroit.cbslocal.com)
- Michigan legislature approves ‘right-to-work’ law in 58-51 vote (thehill.com)
There was some exciting news in the various states other than the presidential election, especially for the other 40+ states that were already in the bank for either Romney or Obama. The top 5 results from this past November 6, 2012, election that I think are significant for the political direction of each of the states. Continue reading
Spending my first 10 days in Indiana, I am already surprised at how many things are different than California. In California, there are calorie counts of everything you order on a restaurant, but I am now guessing in Indiana (having being used to CA). There are many different designs of license plates in IN, but CA’s are 99% of white background with red cursive “California” writing. With the pocket book, taxes are simply cheaper in Indiana: ~7% vs. ~9% in CA. Living in a college town, I don’t necessarily think of IN as a “red state“, but I do know that I’m no longer living in a state which thinks lowly of Republicans.
With that being said, Continue reading