USApp Managing Editor, Chris Gilson, looks at the week in U.S. state blogging. Click here for our weekly roundup of national blogs.
This week in New Hampshire, Granite Grok writes that Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen, who is running for reelection in this November’s mid-terms, has been acting hypocritically. They say that despite supporting pay equality for men and women, Shaheen has been funneling money into Alaska Senator Mark Begich’s campaign, despite the fact that he pays his female staffers $0.71 for every dollar his male staffers earn.
Heading west to New York, Capitol Confidential writes on Monday that Republican gubernatorial candidate, Rob Astorino and Democratic primary candidate, Zephyr Teachout has agreed to have a debate on September 4th. The incumbent Governor, Andrew Cuomo, has thus far refused Astorino’s offer of a debate in the lead up to the election. Staying on the gubernatorial race, State of Politics writes that outgoing Lieutenant Governor Bob Duffy has defended Cuomo’s record over the past four years, after he was asked to comment on the fact that the New York Times has refused to back either Cuomo or Teachout in the upcoming primary election.
In New Jersey this week, PoliticusUSA writes that Republican Governor, Chris Christie, has helped his donors to profit by moving the management of the state’s pension funds to Wall Street, which have seen a 300 percent hike in management fees.
The Keystone State this week won federal approval for Medicaid to be expanded to nearly 500,000 low income adults, reports Wonkblog. They say that Pennsylvania Governor, Republican Tom Corbett, had sought approval from the Obama administration to use money under the Affordable Care Act to buy private health insurance for poor adults. Staying in Pennsylvania, PoliticsPA writes that deleted emails of employees of state agencies are deleted permanently after five days. They say that this means they cannot be accessed by the press or public through the Right-to-Know law, and raises important questions about who decides what public records are.
On Saturday, wataugawatch looks at the recent ending of an incentive program for the film industry in North Carolina. They say that the fact that the state’s General Assembly has cut the program shows that North Carolina is being run by ‘stupid people’, that prefer to support polluting industries like coal and fracking.
Heading south to the Sunshine State, SaintPetersblog writes that 55 Florida House races all but decided in Tuesday’s primary, with 39 being elected without opposition. Tuesday also saw the gubernatorial primary, with incumbent GOP Governor Rick Scott, and Democratic challenger (and former Governor) Charlie Crist easily besting their opponents. The Shark Tank writes that following the results, ‘they can now officially hate each other’, with their first and only debate to take place on October 15th. Late last week a judge in Florida ruled that a previously invalid state electoral map would be used this cycle, ahead of changes for the next. The Seminole Democrat writes on Monday that the decision is ‘despicable’ and that the GOP state legislature should never have been allowed to redraw the map in any case.
On Monday, Alabama’s yellowhammer looks at whether or not drones are poised to have a major impact on the state’s economy, after Governor Robert Bentley announced the creation of a Drone Task Force. They say that the potential implications for drone use in agriculture – the state’s biggest industry – are huge.
In Texas this week, Burnt Orange Report writes that the Lone Star State is one of the worst in the U.S. for women’s equality, at 47th out of 50. They say that Texas has the lowest rank for female executives, and is the bottom ten for unemployment among women. On Friday this week, Daily Kos reports that the Republican nominee for Texas Governor, Greg Abbott, has ‘chickened out’ of debating the Democratic nominee, Wendy Davis. They say that Abott’s campaign has pulled out citing their ‘inability to agree on specific details of the format’, after agreeing to the terms in May.
This week in Ohio, Plunderbund says that the policies of GOP Governor, John Kasich have put more Ohioans into the ‘shadows’. They say that Kasich has cut thousands of people in the state from federally funded food aid at a time when the state still has thousands of jobs to recoup in the wake of the Great Recession.
Moving north to Michigan, eclectablog writes on Monday that the state’s Republican candidates have been ‘flat-out lying’ about the Affordable Care Act (ACA). They say that candidates have falsely claimed that Obamacare is a disaster, and that it limits people’s health insurance options, and have stated that Governor Rick Snyder’s Healthy Michigan Initiative (which is actually funded by the ACA) is a better alternative.
On Saturday, Caffeinated Politics asks why the town of Waunakee in Wisconsin needs a grenade launcher. They say that a friend contacted the Chief of Police in the town, who responded to say that the police department tried to return the grenade launcher but was told to keep it as there is a lengthy process to return it.
Staying on the subject of overzealous policing, Daily Kos writes on Thursday that the police response to civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, will cost the state nearly $3.5 million (including $1 million in overtime) in addition to the $4 million cost for the emergency duties of the National Guard.
Daily Kos also looks at the state of the Democratic Party in Kansas this week, writing on Wednesday that they have put a pro-Obamacare plan into the state party platform, which focuses specifically on Medicaid expansion. They say that the move is aimed at Governor Sam Brownback who has so far refused to accept the expansion of Medicaid in the state.
West and Pacific
In the Centennial State this week, ColoradoPols reports that Republicans are looking at serious campaign finance violation, as a candidate for a state House district is accused of illegally coordinating the activities of ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ campaign finances.
Heading down to Arizona, Blog for Arizona writes on Saturday that both those on the left and right agree that Congressional candidate, Martha McSally is a ‘fraudulent candidate’. They say that she has refused to participate in debates and interviews and knows little about the job that she is seeking.
Fox & Hounds writes this week that the recently passed water bond in California (to address the state’s worsening drought) is a missed opportunity, after it was reduced from $11 billion to $7.5 billion in order to create the ‘illusion of fiscal discipline’ rather than addressing as many water problems as possible. Staying in the Golden State, Hit & Run reports on Tuesday that Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law the country’s first cellphone ‘kill switch’ bill, which requires that smartphones sold from July 2015 in California must be equipped with a remote ‘kill switch’ which will render the phone inoperable if stolen.
In Washington State this week, SeattlePI reports that the Seattle Human Rights Commission has called for the city to change the name of Columbus Day to “Indigenous Peoples’ Day.”
Finally, in Alaska, The Mudflats has the top ten deleted tweets from the recent campaign of current Lieutenant Governor Mead Treadwell, who lost the recent Senate Primary to Dan Sullivan. The tweets, sent by Fred Brown (Treadwell’s campaign manager), attacked Sullivan for being a ‘carpet-bagger’ and are described as ‘a little GOP elephant-on-elephant violence’.
Note: This article gives the views of the author, and not the position of USApp– American Politics and Policy, nor of the London School of Economics.
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