Tag Archives: Elections

Voting Matters, Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall

The first election that I can remember, I was four years old and I was accompanying my dad to go vote for our state representative and for our member of Congress. He brought me into the voting booth and I helped him pull down the levers as together we voted for who would represent our district. It all came full circle when I went to the city hall in Newton, Massachusetts to register to vote as soon as I turned 18, when I led voter registration efforts in college or when my dad and I went to my former elementary school to vote this past November. Through voting, I could be actively engaged in the political process and participate in the most basic right (and rite!) of democracy.

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Israeli Elections

Recapping the Israeli Elections

Israelis went to the polls to elect a new Knesset for the 20th time in its history on Tuesday, in what was supposed to be one of the closest elections in years. When voting ended at 10 p.m., exit polling predictions showed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s party, Likud, in a dead heat with the center-left Zionist Union opposition party. When Israelis woke up Wednesday and the votes had been counted, it became clear that Netanyahu’s Likud had won a decisive victory, with 30 seats in Knesset compared to Zionist Union’s 24. Isaac Herzog, the leader of Zionist Union, who had been hoping to become Prime Minister and form the next Israeli government, called Netanyahu earlier Wednesday to concede the election. Read more…

Israeli Elections

Seven Weeks ‘Till (Israeli) Elections!

It’s been just 29 days since I last gave an update on new elections for the Israeli Knesset, but there has been no shortage of newsworthy developments from the Jewish State. With only seven weeks left until Israelis go to the polls, parties (and party leaders) are frantically posturing for their party to look the most attractive to voters on Election Day. Read more…

Capitol Dome, sunshine

The Jewish Caucus in the New Congress

The 114th Congress opens this week, welcoming 12 new senators and 52 new representatives. As these new members take office – and move into their new offices on Capitol Hill – they become key players in our work to repair the world. Read more…

front door of the RAC, our year in blogs

2014 at the RAC: Our Year in Blogs  

The (secular) New Year brings new opportunities and new challenges in the world of Jewish social justice. The 114th Congress will convene on January 3, 2015 at noon. As we look towards what 2015 will bring, let’s take a moment to look back at 2014 through 14 RACBlog highlights.

This list is a mix of our most popular blogs or the blogs that represent landmark moments in our programming or observances. Don’t see your favorite blog here? Let us know in the comments! Read more…

Still No Representation for the Nation’s Capital

Though 40 states voted on 139 ballot measures last November, there were voters in the country who were not fully heard: those in the District of Columbia. Ironically, those who live where Congress meets lack full representation.

There is no one representing the District in the Senate, and the House of Representatives has one DC member non-voting delegate. While Americans living in the District pay federal taxes, serve on juries, and participate in the Armed Services, they do not have full representation. Further, all locally passed laws and the District’s local budget require Congressional approval. The District is subject to this oversight, yet its citizens cannot make their voices heard in the legislative body that regulates them.

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Money in politics

Spending Bill Allows 10x Increase in Campaign Contributions

Debate over the “CRomnibus” spending bill closed out the 113th Congress—and 2014—with a bang. Ultimately, Congress passed the bill to avoid another shutdown and to fund the government until September 2015, the end of the fiscal year. But, lawmakers opposed the bill for its harmful policy riders, which, as my colleague Melanie Fineman explained, are amendments attached to legislation in its last stages to alter the language or to attach a new idea on a bill on which a compromise has already been reached.

One rider of particular concern will allow wealthy political contributors to give even more money to political parties. The provision creates three distinct funds within each national party, allowing individual donors to contribute up to $97,200 to each fund, each year. That’s $324,000 per year, or $648,000 per two-year election cycle. Until now, individual contributions to national parties were limited to $32,400 per year, or $64,800 in a two-year cycle. So, individual donors are now allowed to give 10 times the previous limit to finance national party activities, opening a dangerous door for wealthy contributors to gain undue influence on our political system. Read more…

raise the minimum wage banner

Progress in the States on Minimum Wage: Time for Congressional Action

In the midterm elections last month, when we saw successful votes to increase the minimum wage in four states (Alaska, Arkansas, South Dakota, and Nebraska).

It is exciting that all of these measures were approved and the Reform Movement applauded these efforts at the state level. Read more…