Skip to content
Search

Latest Stories

Top Stories

Two states asking Supreme Court for permission to regulate Electoral College conduct

Ballot box
teguhjatipras/Getty Images

This story was updated Nov. 21 with additional information.

Colorado has become the second state to ask the Supreme Court to decide if states may legally bind their presidential electors to vote for the candidate who carried their state.

The issue of so-called faithless electors is the latest aspect of an increasingly heated debate about the virtues and flaws of the Electoral College that has blossomed, especially among progressive democracy reform advocates, now that two of the past five presidential winners (Donald Trump in 2016 and George W. Bush in 2000) got to the Oval Office despite losing the national popular vote.


Last week, three electors from Washington — who were fined for voting for Colin Powell in 2016 instead of Hilary Clinton, the state's popular vote winner — filed a similar petition with the court. The fines were upheld by the state Supreme Court. In response, Washington told the high court in D.C. that "nothing in the text of the Constitution or its historical implementation precludes states" from passing laws to bind electors.

One of Colorado's nine electors also refused to vote for Clinton despite an order by the state's top elections official, who subsequently replaced the elector with someone who did. The elector sued, arguing a state law that mandates which candidate an elector must vote for was unconstitutional.

Sign up for The Fulcrum newsletter

Thirty-two states have laws binding an elector's vote to the winner of the popular vote, but neither the Constitution nor federal law requires that Electoral College members adhere to state results.

A lower court dismissed the Colorado case, saying the elector was not eligible to sue. The 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver reversed part of the decision, however, saying the elector could challenge his dismissal.

At a news conference Wednesday, Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser, who filed the petition with the Supreme Court, said the issue represented "a threat to the shared understanding of how our constitutional democracy works."

"Voters are expecting their votes to be delivered," said Weiser, a Democrat.

Colorado's Democratic secretary of state, Jena Griswold, defended the state's law intended to prevent faithless electors. "The idea that nine electors in Colorado that are unelected, unaccountable and that Coloradans really don't know could disregard our state law and the outcome of the general election is really unfathomable," she said. "This is a major decision, and we are hopeful the Supreme Court will do the right thing and protect our constitutional democracy."

Read More

Project 2025: A federal Parents' Bill of Rights

Republican House members hold a press event to highlight the introduction in 2023.

Bill O'Leary/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Project 2025: A federal Parents' Bill of Rights

Biffle is a podcast host and contributor at BillTrack50.

This is part of a series offering a nonpartisan counter to Project 2025, a conservative guideline to reforming government and policymaking during the first 180 days of a second Trump administration. The Fulcrum's cross partisan analysis of Project 2025 relies on unbiased critical thinking, reexamines outdated assumptions, and uses reason, scientific evidence, and data in analyzing and critiquing Project 2025.

Project 2025, the conservative Heritage Foundation’s blueprint for a second Trump administration, includes an outline for a Parents' Bill of Rights, cementing parental considerations as a “top tier” right.

The proposal calls for passing legislation to ensure families have a "fair hearing in court when the federal government enforces policies that undermine their rights to raise, educate, and care for their children." Further, “the law would require the government to satisfy ‘strict scrutiny’ — the highest standard of judicial review — when the government infringes parental rights.”

Keep ReadingShow less
USAID flag outside a building
J. David Ake/Getty Images

Project 2025: U.S. Agency for International Development

Breslin is the Joseph C. Palamountain Jr. Chair of Political Science at Skidmore College and author of “A Constitution for the Living: Imagining How Five Generations of Americans Would Rewrite the Nation’s Fundamental Law.”

This is part of a series offering a nonpartisan counter to Project 2025, a conservative guideline to reforming government and policymaking during the first 180 days of a second Trump administration. The Fulcrum's cross partisan analysis of Project 2025 relies on unbiased critical thinking, reexamines outdated assumptions, and uses reason, scientific evidence, and data in analyzing and critiquing Project 2025.

South African divestment is the most famous, and likely most successful, global pressure campaign in recent memory. The enemy was the minority white elites who conceived, implemented and perpetuated apartheid, the incomprehensibly malevolent scheme of legally sanctioned racial separation. These racists got their just desserts when company after company, government after government, and individual after individual pulled their resources. Eventually, the South African economy strained, leaders were toppled and the country began its long march toward moral reclamation.

Keep ReadingShow less
Wegovy box
Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

How Congress can quickly make Ozempic, Wegovy affordable

Pearl, the author of “ChatGPT, MD,” teaches at both the Stanford University School of Medicine and the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He is a former CEO of The Permanente Medical Group.

A whopping one in eight U.S. adults have taken GLP-1 drugs like Wegovy and Ozempic for weight loss and related conditions. Their popularity and efficacy have sparked a prescription-writing frenzy in recent years, leaving both medications on the Food and Drug Administration's drug shortage list since May 2023.

Keep ReadingShow less
Man climbing a set of exterior steps

The author, Miliyon Ethiopis, following a court’s decision to grant his asylum request on June 18.

U.S. immigration court ruling on statelessness could have wide impact

Ethiopis is a co-founder of United Stateless, a national organization led by stateless people.

I feel like I have been born again, after a U.S. immigration court made a remarkable ruling in my “statelessness” case in June. I hope that my case will have significant, broader implications for other stateless people in America.

Being stateless means no country will claim you as a citizen. We don't belong anywhere. Stateless people are military veterans. We are Harvard graduates. We are Holocaust survivors. There are millions of stateless people around the world, and 200,000 such people in the United States.

Keep ReadingShow less
Bar graph of shopping carts
Andriy Onufriyenko/Getty Images

Have prices increased 40 percent to 50 percent since Trump left office?

This fact brief was originally published by Wisconsin Watch. Read the original here. Fact briefs are published by newsrooms in the Gigafact network, and republished by The Fulcrum. Visit Gigafact to learn more.

Have prices increased 40 percent to 50 percent since Trump left office?

No.

Cumulative inflation since former President Donald Trump left office in January 2021 through May 2024 was 20.1 percent according to data from the Federal Reserve’s Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers, or CPI-U.

Trump told a crowd on June 18 in Racine, Wis., that "real inflation" is more than twice that.

Keep ReadingShow less