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Censure sensibility: Once rare, party censure rises amid polarized politics

Arizona is not the only state where political parties are taking their elected officials to task, a change that analysts and former lawmakers attribute to the politically polarized times and now almost a rite of passage for some prominent politicians. ... Read more»

Voting rights legislation fails to overcome filibuster despite rule change attempt

Legislation that would create new federal guidelines for mail-in and early voting and end partisan gerrymandering failed to overcome a filibuster from Republicans Wednesday night, despite a last-ditch attempt by Democrats to alter the Senate's rules to push through the legislation.... Read more»

Schumer says Senate to consider changing the filibuster if voting rights stalls

With the midterm elections approaching, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer warned on Monday that the Senate is prepared to debate changes in the filibuster if Republicans continue to block the advancement of voting rights legislation. ... Read more»

Arizona Sen. Sinema opposes filibuster carveout to advance voting rights legislation

Arizona’s U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema remains opposed to weakening the Senate’s 60-vote threshold for moving ahead on legislation, even as other Democrats are floating the idea of making an exception to the chamber’s rules to pass major voting rights measures. ... Read more»

Challenges to the Voting Rights Act are far from over

When the U.S. Supreme Court decided an important Arizona voting rights case earlier this year, its ruling made it more difficult for voters to challenge restrictive state voting laws - now, the state of Texas is attempting to hobble what remains of the Voting Rights Act. ... Read more»

Revised voting rights bill named for John Lewis wins over Lisa Murkowski, but still 9 GOP votes short

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski said Tuesday she would join Senate Democrats in backing a compromise voting rights bill, marking the first time this year a Republican has signed on to a measure that likely still lacks enough GOP support to become law.... Read more»

New unit launched at Interior Dep't to investigate cases of missing and murdered Indigenous people

The U.S. Department of the Interior is creating a new unit to lead and help coordinate investigations into the ongoing crisis of murdered and missing American Indian and Alaska Native people. ... Read more»

GOP opposition to state and local aid remains as Senate heads toward vote on COVID bill

As Democrats seek to send President Joe Biden their latest $1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill, federal lawmakers remain deeply divided on the question of whether state and local governments need another infusion of federal aid. Supporters of the bill — including numerous Republican mayors — say the answer is a clear “yes.” ... Read more»

McCain, 2 GOP women senators, help defeat repeal of Obamacare

Sen. John McCain’s decision to buck his party early Friday and vote against a GOP plan to repeal Obamacare was both hailed as an example of “amazing courage” and derided as “betraying his conservative constituency.” He joined Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine to vote against a repeal of parts of the Affordable Care Act. ... Read more»

Quick take

McCain votes 'no' on Obamacare repeal: Bill 'offered no replacement'

Joining two other Republicans to kill an Obamacare repeal effort in a dramatic late-night Senate vote, Sen. John McCain said the GOP's "skinny repeal" bill "offered no replacement to actually reform our health care system and deliver affordable, quality health care to our citizens." With video.... Read more»

Barber calls for bipartisan seating at State of the Union

Southern Arizona Democrat Ron Barber joined a bipartisan group urging senators and representatives to cross party lines — at least to sit together at President Obama's Jan. 28 State of the Union address. Barber, along with U.S. Rep. Matt Salmon, an Arizona Republican; Democratic Sen. Mark Udall of Colorado; and Alaska GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski, urged colleagues to repeat the aisle-crossing begun in 2011 after the Jan. 8 attack in Tucson.... Read more»

Smart v. Stupid

The Bachmann-Palin Smack Down

Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann are running for President—against each other. This should be fun…... Read more»2

Turning momentum into votes against DADT

The Senate last week failed to proceed to debate the Fiscal Year 2011 National Defense Authorization Act, which includes language to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy for gays and lesbians serving in the U.S. military.... Read more»

Analysis

‘Bailout’ baloney: Serving up loaded word to spin public

This campaign season, "bailout" is a dirty — and often misused — word. Those who abuse the word "bailout" aren't appealing to logic, or trying to describe what they oppose accurately. They are seeking to trigger a gut response in an audience inclined to recoil instinctively at the word, and hoping nobody stops to think or ask questions.... Read more»