Seven counties in rural eastern Oregon have now voted in nonbinding, county-level initiatives to leave Oregon and join the state of Idaho. According to proponents of the "Greater Idaho Movement," conservative-heavy rural Oregon has more in common with their neighbors in Idaho than with the greater numbers of liberal voters in the state's coastal cities … Continue reading “Greater Idaho”: All About the Oregon-Idaho Border
The US has finally reached the point in its battle against COVID-19 when many of us can go without masks. Mostly, this is because vaccines are now widely available, and enough of the population has been vaccinated that transmission risks are greatly reduced (though we have not reached herd immunity, a threshold that requires 60%-80% … Continue reading Vaccinations: Where are we at?
Over the past several weeks, multiple states have introduced legislation limiting or banning male to female transgender athletes from participating in women's and girl's sports. Proponents of the various bills and laws argue that transgender athletes would have an unfair advantage over cisgender (or biological) women and girls, especially if the transgender athletes went through … Continue reading Transgender Women and Girls in Sports
The Trump administration and the Biden administration have very different approaches to immigration policy, particularly at the US southern border, both in rhetoric and policy. Biden has made it a goal to reverse much of what Trump did while in office, though it's slow going for him. The number of migrants at the border is … Continue reading Biden and the Border
In the wake of the deadly winter storm that hammered the state mid-February, Texas suffered severe power outages. Rolling blackouts led to millions of people losing power for several days, due to a combination of frozen equipment, intentional shutdowns, and surging demand that overwhelmed emergency backup generators. In spite of only having power for at … Continue reading Texas’ Electric Grid: The Market and Federalism
US foreign policy is a complicated subject. It shifts with every president to reflect the new administration's needs and goals. Each president sets the overall tone, working closely with advisors and the Department of State. The State Department consists of the Secretary of State (currently Antony Blinken), the US Mission to the UN, and the … Continue reading Biden’s Foreign Policy Changes
With the swearing in of Georgia’s two new Democratic Senators, the Senate is now split evenly between the two parties, with 50 senators of each party. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has formally become the majority leader. Sen. Schumer's leadership isn't the same as when Sen. Mitch McConnel (R-KY) was majority leader, because Schumer doesn't hold … Continue reading A 50-50 Senate: Why it’s Complicated