THIS WEEK IN POLITICS: MARCH 22, 2019
SATURDAY MARCH 16, 2019: MISSISSIPPI ORDERED TO REDRAW A DISTRICT
Senate District 22 in Mississippi was ordered to be redrawn by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, because it was not offering African- Americans an equal opportunity in voting. A judge had found that African-American’s voting power of that district had been weakened. This problem came to the judges attention, after three residents had sued the state in July because the way the district was put together, it violated the Voting Rights Act. The district stretches through six counties, with 51% of the population being African- Americans of voting age.
SUNDAY MARCH 17, 2019: KIRSTEN GILLIBRAND LAUNCHES 2020 PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) earlier this year had launched an exploratory committee for the 2020 Presidential Election, and this Sunday officially declared her bid in the race. Even though she officially launched her campaign now, she had been campaigning in states that hold early primary contests. Sen. Gillibrand is set to deliver her first major speech of her campaign, on Sunday March 24th in front of Trump International Hotel in New York City.
MONDAY MARCH 18, 2019: BETO O’ROURKE’S RECORD BREAKING FUNDRAISING
Former Congressman Beto O’Rourke (D-TX) raises $6.1 million, in the first 24 hours after he had launched his presidential campaign, making it the largest amount raised within the first 24 hours. The previous record-breaking amount was held by Bernie Sanders. Sen. Sanders was able to raise $5.9 million within the first 24 hours after launching his 2020 presidential campaign, but Congressman O’Rourke was able to take that spot after the record-smashing online donations towards his campaign.
TUESDAY MARCH 19, 2019: MICHAEL COHEN INVESTIGATION HAD BEEN GOING ON SINCE 2017
Records released on Tuesday show that the Michael Cohen investigation had been going on for longer than everyone thought. In the records it is said that the FBI started investigating Michael Cohen in July 2017. The FBI was able to keep their investigation secret, but it became public after Cohen’s home and office were raided by the FBI last April. The raid led to Cohen receiving three years in prison for tax evasion and campaign finances violations.
WEDNESDAY MARCH 20, 2019: DEFENSE SECRETARY UNDER ETHICS PROBE
Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan is under investigation for being suspected of violating ethics rules by promoting products of Boeing during his role in the Pentagon. Before taking the position as the acting Defense Secretary, Shanahan had worked for Boeing for over 30 years. C.R.E.W. (Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington) filed a complaint leading to the investigation, because Shanahan’s actions violated his signed ethics agreement, that calls for no conflicts of interest during his time at the Pentagon.
THURSDAY MARCH 21, 2019: PRES. TRUMP SIGNS FREE SPEECH EXECUTIVE ORDER
On Thursday, Pres. Trump signed an executive order aimed at protecting free speech on college and university campuses. This executive order was previously mentioned during his speech at the
Conservative Political Action Conference (C.P.A.C.) a few weeks ago. This executive order is supposed to “guarantee” free speech on campuses and schools that do not comply to these rules will lose federal research funding. An official from the Trump administration mentioned that this order will not affect aid programs that go towards tuition.
FRIDAY MARCH 22, 2019: ROBERT MUELLER’S INVESTIGATION IS COMPLETE
Special Counsel Robert Mueller has officially finished his investigation on Russian intervention during the 2016 Presidential Election. The report had been delivered to Attorney General William Barr on Friday evening. Attorney General Barr is currently reviewing the report and may announce Mueller’s results over this upcoming weekend.
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