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The DC: 📣 Toughening laws against oil protesters, and... Do you support or oppose abortion bans?

by Countable | 5.22.19

Welcome to Thursday, May 23, heads and tails...

#StopTheBans or #SupportTheBans?

In the past three months, five red states have enacted laws that severely restrict access to abortion: Georgia, Ohio, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Alabama.

In the past three days, the Nevada state assembly passed a law to remove abortion restrictions; six Democratic Alabama lawmakers introduced a bill to repeal the state’s abortion ban; and Wisconsin’s Democratic governor has vowed to veto abortion restriction bills passed by state lawmakers.

On Tuesday, abortions rights activists hit streets across the country for #StopTheBan rallies, protesting the recent wave of anti-abortion laws.

"I stand in solidarity with those across the country to #StoptheBans," tweeted presidential hopeful Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA). "We will fight with everything we've got to protect a woman's right to make her own health care decisions."

But Mallory Quigley, the vice president of communications for Susan B. Anthony List, an anti-abortion group, told the New York Times that bills limiting abortion far outnumber those protecting access to the procedure. 

“This legislation that’s being advocated to take away any existing protections for unborn children has been too extreme even for some of the Democrat base,” Quigley said.

On the Radar

Citizenship Dreamin'

House Judiciary Committee Democrats voted on Wednesday to advance bills that would provide so-called “Dreamers” and recipients of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) with permanent legal status and a path to U.S. citizenship.

The Dream Act (H.R. 2820) would grant roughly 3.6 million Dreamers who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children with 10 years of permanent resident status and the opportunity to apply for citizenship after five years if they meet eligibility requirements. 

The Promise Act (H.R. 2821) would give eligible foreign nationals from certain countries who received TPS or Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) the ability to apply for lawful permanent resident status.

The Venezuela TPS Act (H.R. 549) would allow Venezuelans fleeing the crisis brought on by the regime of socialist Nicolas Maduro to receive TPS so they can live and work in America temporarily.

Should Congress pass these bills?

Nevada Going Popular?

Nevada could become the latest state to join the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, after the Senate voted to pledge its electoral votes to the national popular vote winner.

The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact only goes into effect if laws pass in enough states to represent an electoral majority (i.e., the states joining the coalition must have a combined electoral vote of 270 or above). The total is now at 189, with 14 states and Washington, D.C., having joined the pact.

“The movement to abolish the electoral college is winning,” tweeted Public Citizen.

“If we go to a national popular vote, why would they even bother coming here? Our constitution says we’re a republic, not a democracy,” said Nevada Assemblyman Jim Wheeler (R) during last month’s debate.

Should the U.S. abandon the Electoral College?

Under the Radar

Pipe(line) Down

Pipeline protesters in Texas may face up to ten years in prison after the state Senate passed legislation that makes interference with pipelines and other oil and gas infrastructure a third-degree felony.

House Bill 3557 was introduced by state Rep. Chris Paddie (R-Marshall), who said the law does not affect those who engage in peaceful protest for any reason.

“It attaches liability to those who potentially damage or destroy critical infrastructure facilities," Paddie said.

Frankie Orona, executive director of the Society of Native Nations, told The Austin American-Statesman that the bill put profits over people.

“It’s an anti-protest bill, favoring the fossil fuel industry, favoring corporations over people.”

Do you support toughening laws against oil protesters?

Your Gov at a Glance 👀

The White House: President Trump in D.C.

  • At 11:00am EDT, the president will meet with the secretary of energy.
  • At 3:15pm EDT, the president will deliver remarks on supporting America's farmers and ranchers.

The House of Representatives: In

  • Voting on a bill to make bipartisan reforms to 401(k) plans and IRAs to help Americans save for retirement.

The Senate: In

What You're Saying

Here's how you're answering Should the Trump Admin’s Changes to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Be Reversed?

(Follow Joanne's comment here.)

(Follow Susan's comment here.)

But wait, there's more!

And, in the End…

It's Lucky Penny Day. Below is the first copper coin issued by the authority of the U.S. government. The "Fugio" cents were struck in 1787, and, yes, they were actually stamped "Mind your business."

Hope any denomination of coin you find is lucky,

—Josh Herman

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Written by Countable

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