👋 Away Message: So we had a little scheduling snafu here at WTF HQ, where both myself and Joe (voice of the pod) double-booked ourselves with personal and professional obligations next week. Oopsie! Not a very great job using a calendar on my part, I guess. On the other hand, it appears the government isn't going to be open for business anyway... Unless something truly WTF-y happens, I'll see you all again on Tuesday, October 10th, because Monday is a holiday (Indigenous Peoples' Day).
In the mean time, try our little news aggregator tool – currentstatus.io – to keep you up-to-date on the daily shock and awe. Thanks for understanding and for being here. I'm going to miss you.
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1/ Ohio voters will decide whether to make it harder to amend the state constitution in a special election that has implications over the future of abortion rights in the state. If Issue 1 passes, it would raise the threshold for passing future changes to the Ohio constitution from a simple majority to 60%. And then, three months after that, voters will consider a constitutional amendment that would enshrine abortion access in the state constitution. Meaning: If Issue 1 passes, the referendum to amend the state constitution to protect abortion rights would have to get at least 60% of the vote, rather than a simple majority, to go into effect. The Republican-led State Legislature ordered the special election to front run the November effort to add an abortion rights amendment to the constitution. Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose previously acknowledged that the purpose of the summertime ballot measure was “100% about keeping a radical pro-abortion amendment out of our constitution.” (New York Times / Washington Post / CNN / Politico / Wall Street Journal / NBC News / Associated Press / ABC News / Columbus Dispatch / USA Today / NPR)
2/ Supreme Court backed a Biden administration effort to regulate “ghost guns” – do-it-yourself firearm-making kits that are generally hard to trace. The ruling temporarily allows the government to require manufacturers of ghost gun kits to have serial numbers and conduct background checks on customers while a lawsuit challenging the regulations continues in the lower courts. John Roberts and Amy Coney Barrett joined with the court’s three liberal members to form the majority, while Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh dissented. (USA Today / NBC News / The Hill / Washington Post / Associated Press / Politico / New York Times / CNN)
3/ Biden designated a new national monument near the Grand Canyon – called the Baaj Nwaavjo I’tah Kukveni, or Ancestral Footprints of the Grand Canyon. The designation conserves more than 1.1 million acres of land and permanently bans new uranium mining claims in the area “to help right the wrongs of the past and conserve this land […] for all future generations.” Arizona Republican lawmakers, meanwhile, voted to formally oppose the designation to preserve Native American cultural sites and protect the region from new uranium mining, calling it a “bureaucratic land grab.” The move is Biden’s fifth new national monument and advances his commitment to conserve at least 30% of American land and water by 2030. (AZ Central / USA Today / Politico / NPR / Washington Post / CNN / Wall Street Journal / New York Times)
4/ Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis restructured his presidential campaign operations for the third time in less than a month as he continues lose ground to Trump in national and statewide polling for the Republican nomination. DeSantis replaced his campaign manager after making two big staff cuts in the past few weeks, laying off about a third of his staff in late July in an attempt to cut costs. (Associated Press / Politico / Washington Post / New York Times / NBC News)
poll/ 64% of Americans say they disapprove of last year’s Supreme Court ruling that women do not have a constitutional right to an abortion. 78% say that politicians in the federal government aren’t doing enough to ensure abortion access, with 60% saying that politicians in their state’s government are also doing too little. (CNN)
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