Daily Resource Highlight 3/29/2021
Posted by Michelle Dickson on March 29, 2021 at 1:02 PM
Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.
3/23/2021 - Counting Philadelphia: A Census Story
Early last year, when COVID-19 was still an unknown threat, the U.S. Census Bureau was at my library encouraging locals to apply for a job with the 2020 Census. I decided to apply and was eventually hired as the supervisor for my community in Southern New Jersey. It was my duty to make sure that everybody in my town was counted.
During a normal Census year, this is challenging. In 2020, as you can imagine, it was an entirely different beast. We had less time to get the job done, and we were knocking on strangers’ doors during a deadly pandemic.
There have been a number of stories written about these challenges, but fewer stories about how communities adapted to meet the challenges. Public Agenda has one such story. They teamed with Philly Counts 2020 to understand and report how Census workers engaged with the Philadelphia community to achieve an accurate count. You can read the final report here.
As a Philly native, I’m deeply grateful to all the Census workers who worked hard to count my hometown. I also appreciate the City’s efforts to make the 2020 Census’ infrastructure plans, media, and maps publicly accessible to help with future efforts.
3/26/2021 - A Primer on the Senate Filibuster and the “Nuclear Option”
A word of warning. This edition of The Daily* Resource is going to get wonky. But if you want to know why Democrats are struggling to pass their agenda, I encourage you to read on.
When Democrats won the Georgia Senate runoffs, it gave them control of both chambers of Congress as well as the Presidency for the first time since 2008. This has, in turn, led to a push to enact an array of policies favored by reformers and progressive activities, including “a sweeping package of voting, ethics, and campaign finance reforms” known as the “For the People Act of 2021.”
These efforts have been frustrated by the existence of the Senate filibuster, which essentially requires 60 Senators to pass legislation. Democrats were able to circumvent the filibuster for the COVID-19 stimulus bill using a process known as reconciliation. Reconciliation, though, can only be used to pass certain types of legislation (if you want to know more about reconciliation, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget has an excellent overview).
The alternative to getting 60 votes is to use what’s known as “the nuclear option,” which is a procedural maneuver that could be used to change the Senate’s rules and weaken (or eliminate) the filibuster. R Street Institute just published a great article on what it would mean to use the nuclear option and some of the politics that could determine whether the filibuster survives this Congress.
- AllSides - March 13th, 2021: Surveys Show that Democrats — Not Just Republicans — are Proud to be American
- AllSides - March 16th, 2021: Are Republicans or Democrats More Compassionate? Research Says It May Be a Trick Question
- AllSides - March 18th, 2021: Apprehensions of Migrants Surging Along Southern Border
- American Public Square (podcast) March 18th, 2021: Life, A Year After COVID 19 in the United States
- Braver Angels - March 15th, 2021: Tangle: Reimagining Political News | Isaac Saul with Ciaran O’Connor
- Civil Squared - March 23rd, 2021: We disagree on more than politics
- Civil Squared (podcast featuring Jeremy Garson of Bridge Alliance & Liz Joyner of The Village Square) March 22nd, 2021: Conversations After COVID-19
- Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget - March 19th, 2021: The Case for Trust Fund Solutions
- The Flip Side - March 23rd, 2021: Iowa House Election
- The Flip Side - March 24th, 2021: DC Statehood
- The Flip Side - March 25th, 2021: Boulder Shooting
- Independent Voter News - March 24th, 2021: Critical Thinking and Critical Conversations: Real Political Leadership
- Listen First Project (video) March 17th, 2021: #ListenFirst Friday Dr. Amitai Etzioni
- Project on Government Oversight (petition): Release virtual White House visitor logs
- Project on Government Oversight - March 19th, 2021: Avoiding the Subject: On Pfizer Vaccine Quality Control, FDA Says Less than European Counterpart
- Public Agenda - March 8th, 2021: Making it Count: Civic Participation and Census Success in Philadelphia
- R Street Institute - March 19th, 2021: Strengthening the system means putting power over the purse where it belongs
- R Street Institute - March 23rd, 2021: Will Democrats Really Nuke the Filibuster—and What Happens If They Do?
- R Street Institute - March 23rd, 2021: The Modern Moderators Dilemma
- Stand Up Republic: Legislative Priorities for 2021
- The Young Americans Coalition for Unity (pledge): The Youth Unity Pledge