New Poll Says Democrats Lead GOP by 7 Points in Generic Congressional Ballot

New polling from Monmouth University shows that Democrats are faring better in general than Republicans when it comes to who Americans believe should control Congress. The poll, conducted between July 28 to August 1, asked respondents who they preferred to be in charge of the legislative branch. Democrats attained decisive support from 38 percent of respondents, with another 12 percent saying they leaned toward Democrats. Republicans, meanwhile, received 34 percent support, with an additional 9 percent saying they leaned toward them. Overall, when general support for either party was combined with respondents who leaned each way, 50 percent of Americans…

22 Government Watchdogs Ask Pelosi and Schumer to Act on Congressional Stock Ban

A coalition of government watchdog and advocacy groups sent a letter to Democratic leaders on Tuesday, urging them to take action to ban members of Congress from trading individual stocks, a move the organizations say is crucial to protecting democracy and preserving Congress’s legitimacy. The group of 22 organizations told Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-New York) and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) in their letter that the Democrats must bring a stock ban to a vote before the November elections usher in a new Congress, and that the leaders must throw their support behind a ban in order to…

GOP Introduces Bill That Makes It Easier to Fire Workers at Federal Agencies

U.S. Rep. Chip Roy’s introduction Friday of a bill to make federal bureaucratic personnel at-will employees further stoked fears that marginalized workers will suffer discriminatory firings under a future Republican administration or even GOP-controlled Congress. The Public Service Reform Act “will empower federal agencies to swiftly address misconduct and remove underperforming or ill-willed employees, creating a federal workforce focused on service to the American people,” Roy (R-Texas) said in a statement. The bill “would make all federal bureaucrats at-will employees — just like private sector workers — and claw back the inordinate protections some federal employees grossly abuse,” he added.…

Dems Favored to Win the Senate Due to “Weak” GOP Choices, FiveThirtyEight Says

For the first time this election cycle, FiveThirtyEight says that Democrats have a better shot of retaining control of the Senate than Republicans have of winning control of the chamber. The site, known for predicting election outcomes, noted that the change has come in part due to Republicans selecting “weak candidates” in some of the key races for this fall’s midterm contests. FiveThirtyEight’s election model uses polling data and other statistics to simulate the election 40,000 times in order to get a snapshot of who will win. Ultimately, Democrats won the Senate in 52 out of every 100 outcomes simulated…

House Staffers in 8 Offices File to Form First-Ever Congressional Unions

Congressional staffers working in eight House offices have filed petitions to form Congress’s first-ever unions after being granted the right to do so in the spring. House representatives voted to allow their staffers to unionize in a party line vote of 217 to 202 in May. The resolution, introduced by Rep. Andy Levin (D-Michigan), activated decades-old legislation that allowed workers to unionize but that required a separate vote explicitly endorsing the practice. After the legislation was published in the Congressional Record, there was a 60-day probationary period, which the Congressional Workers Union said ended on Monday, meaning that the workers…

Poll: SCOTUS Anti-Abortion Ruling Could Motivate Strong Dem Turnout in Midterms

New polling taken directly after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned abortion rights that were recognized in Roe v. Wade finds that voters are more likely to back candidates in this year’s midterms who support reestablishing abortion rights through federal legislation. According to an NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll conducted over the weekend, 56 percent of Americans do not support the Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, in which the conservative majority ruled to undo the abortion protections established in Roe. Fifty-five percent of respondents said that they think of themselves as mostly supporting abortion rights, while only 36…

To Win Midterms, Sanders Tells Democrats to Take Fight Directly to GOP

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) believes Democrats in Congress need to be more aggressive between now and November if they hope to retain the House and the Senate in this year’s midterm elections. In an op-ed for The Guardian, Sanders acknowledged that numerous polls show that Republicans have a higher chance at winning control of Congress than Democrats. Sanders also noted that enthusiasm for voting among Democrats’ base — Latinx, Black and Asian voters, as well as young and working class people — is lower than among Republicans’ base. Several indicators demonstrate that Democrats are losing support, Sanders went on, including…

Texas Reps Have Taken Over $14 Million From Gun Rights Groups

Texas representatives in the 117th Congress took more money from gun rights groups than lawmakers in any other state, a new OpenSecrets analysis found. Senators and House members representing Texas have received more than $14 million in contributions from gun rights interests over the course of their careers, with much of that coming from the National Rifle Association. Texas also ranks second among the 19 states tracked by OpenSecrets for state-level lobbying by gun rights groups with more than $3 million in spending from 2015 through 2021. During that period, the NRA spent more on state-level lobbying in Texas than…

Lockheed Martin Gave Over $250k to Politicians as They Discussed Ukraine Bills

As lawmakers in Congress debated billions of dollars’ worth of aid to Ukraine, including military aid, major defense contractor Lockheed Martin was spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on campaign donations, new disclosures show. As reported by Insider, Lockheed Martin’s PAC spent $256,000 in April on donations to members of Congress, a gubernatorial campaign and PACs of both major parties. The company made 147 donations in total to the campaigns of federal lawmakers, including donations to five members of the Senate Armed Services Committee and 27 members of the House Armed Services Committee, both of which oversee military and defense…

Ocasio-Cortez Warns That Allowing Congress to Trade Stock Erodes Democracy

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York) pushed to pass a stock trading ban for lawmakers last week, warning that if such legislation isn’t passed, bad faith actors will take advantage of public mistrust in Congress over members’ ability to trade stocks in order to erode democracy. In a press conference calling for Congress to pass a ban on stock trading, Ocasio-Cortez said that the issue “isn’t just about actual impropriety, but … about the perception of impropriety.” One of the many consequences of corruption and insider trading within Congress, she pointed out, is that it undermines the public’s trust in the…

Progressives Demand Congress Cut Military Support for War on Yemen

The United Nations’ goal was to raise more than $4.2 billion for the people of war-torn Yemen by March 15. But when that deadline rolled around, just $1.3 billion had come in. ​​“I am deeply disappointed,” said Jan Egeland, the secretary general of the Norwegian Refugee Council. “The people of Yemen need the same level of support and solidarity that we’ve seen for the people of Ukraine. The crisis in Europe will dramatically impact Yemenis’ access to food and fuel, making an already dire situation even worse.” With Yemen importing more than 35% of its wheat from Russia and Ukraine,…

Congressional Staffers Announce That They Are Unionizing

On Friday, congressional staffers declared that they are unionizing, an announcement that was met with an outpouring of support from progressive and Democratic lawmakers. The Congressional Workers Union has been in the midst of organizing efforts for over a year, they said in a statement. “[W]e are proud to publicly announce our efforts to unionize the personal offices and committees of Congress, in solidarity with our fellow workers across the United States and the world,” the staffers wrote. “While not all offices and committees face the same working conditions, we strongly believe that to better serve our constituents will require…

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