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December 27th, 2014

Fracking ban fallout in New York, Texas facing recession, and redistricting in Ohio: US state blog round up for 20 – 26 December

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Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Blog Admin

December 27th, 2014

Fracking ban fallout in New York, Texas facing recession, and redistricting in Ohio: US state blog round up for 20 – 26 December

0 comments

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

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USApp Managing Editor, Chris Gilson, looks at the week in U.S. state blogging. Click here for our weekly roundup of national blogs. 

Northeast

On Sunday, VTDigger wonders if Vermont’s government is currently spending too little. They say that while the Governor, Peter Shumlin and the state’s legislators are constantly reminding everyone that the state needs a skilled workforce, paying for it is apparently too hard, given the recent reductions to the Vermont State Colleges System.

This week The American Interest examines the fallout from New York Governor, Andrew Cuomo’s announcement that his administration will ban fracking in the state. They say that while Cuomo has cited environmental concerns, it is of little help to those outside of New York City who are facing hard economic realities. On Monday, Daily Kos congratulates the voters of Staten Island in New York for re-electing convicted felon in the form of GOP Representative Michael Grimm. Grimm plead guilty this week to a felony charge of cheating on his taxes.

The weekend saw the shooting of two New York Police Department Officers in Brooklyn, which has since further polarized the debate about the police in U.S. society. Hit & Run reminds us that while many are rushing to cast blame for the shootings on politicians and protestors, we should not forget the shooter, who was ‘violent and unhinged’. On similar lines, The Federalist writes on Monday that playing the blame game over the shootings won’t bring peace between those who are critical of the policing system and its defenders.

Credit: Gage Skidmore (CC-BY-SA-2.0)
New Jersey Governor, Chris Christie Credit: Gage Skidmore (CC-BY-SA-2.0)

Heading to New Jersey, Blue Jersey writes this week on Republican Governor, Chris Christie’s management of the state’s pension system. They say that recently released documents show that the head of the New Jersey State Investment Council (and friend of Christie) has awarded lucrative pension management contracts to hedge fund, private equity, and venture capital firms that had made contributions to Christie’s 2013 gubernatorial campaign. 

South 

This week, American Thinker writes that Virginia’s Democratic Governor, Terry McAuliffe is threatening 2nd Amendment rights in the state by trying to impose new restrictions on gun ownership. They say that the new measure will do little to keep guns out of the hands of felons, and will hurt a small minority of the population – gun collectors who buy firearms at guns shows. Staying in the Old Dominion State, on Tuesday, Bearing Drift looks at 7 things that conservatives learned in Virginia politics this year. These include ‘Never take a gift’, following the conviction of former Governor, Bob McDonnell for accepting gifts.

Last week saw former Florida Governor, Jeb Bush announce that he would be considering running for president in 2016. Roll Call’s At the Races looks at how this will affect the 2016 Senate race in Florida, given that incumbent GOP Senator, Marco Rubio, may well be exploring a similar presidential bid. They say that if Rubio runs for president (he has made it clear he will not seek both offices at the same time), then there are few potential Democratic candidates. Remaining in the Sunshine State, The Seminole Democrat writes this week that while a federal judge last week ruled that Florida’s ban on same sex marriage was unconstitutional, Florida’s Attorney General, Pam Bondi, filed an emergency stay to the ruling with the U.S. Supreme Court.  While the stay was denied, they say that Bondi’s actions show that Florida’s GOP are going to fight it all the way to the end.

Heading west to Louisiana, Something like the Truth looks at the Good, Bad and Ugly in the state’s politics in 2014.

In the Lone Star State, Burnt Orange Report writes that while the U.S. economy grew at a rate of 5 percent in the third quarter of 2014, Texas is facing a possible recession. They say that the recent fall in oil prices could be responsible for up to 125,000 job losses my mid-2015. 

Midwest 

Ohio Governor John Kasich - Photo Credit: Governor Beshear (Creative Commons: BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Ohio Governor John Kasich – Photo Credit: Governor Beshear (Creative Commons: BY-NC-ND 2.0)

On Tuesday, Hit & Run reports that Ohio has just made it harder to ‘accidentally commit a crime’. They say that Governor John Kasich has just signed a state Senate bill into law that shields small business and individuals from prosecution when they accidentally break a state law, rule or regulation. The Monkey Cage, meanwhile looks at whether or not Ohio’s recently announced plan to draw its state legislative districts using a bipartisan process will lead to elections that are more competitive.

Heading north to Michigan, eclectablog writes on Tuesday that, somewhat unsurprisingly, the number of schools in the state that are in deficit has increased by 10 percent after the state’s Republican government cut billions from the state’s educational system.

In Indiana this week, Howey Politics gives an in-depth examination of the state’s Democratic Party, writing that its shift to the Republican Party has been emphatic at the local level, with the GOP holding the vast majority of many county officials.

Moving west to Nebraska, The Daily Signal reports that the state’s auditor has found problems in the way that the state’s government gives out welfare payments and monitors the program.

West and Pacific 

On Saturday, The Spot looks at why Colorado Governor, John Hickenlooper does not (and is not likely to) wear a tie. They say that his informality has its origin during his 2010 campaign when people constituents criticized him for wearing a necktie, which led him to pledge to not wear one.

Eye on Boise reports that a federal court has ruled that the state must pay more than $400,000 in attorney fees after it lost a case to defend a ban on same-sex marriage. 

Featured image credit: CREDO.fracking (Flickr, CC-BY-2.0)

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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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