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How the 5 most populous states have overhauled their election systems

This is the first in a series of articles examining changes to voting laws in every state.

The ongoing election evolution in the United States, while in large part catalyzed by the Covid-19 pandemic, has been building momentum for years.

Many states were already undergoing major overhauls to their election systems leading up to the 2020 election, even before the pandemic gripped the nation. And in the aftermath of the presidential contest, states have doubled down on voting reforms.

To provide a comprehensive analysis of the voting law changes in every state and Washington, D.C., since 2019, The Fulcrum compiled data from the Voting Rights Lab, the National Conference for State Legislatures, the Brennan Center for Justice, and state statutes and constitutions. This first installment focuses on the five most populous states.

In California and New York, where Democrats control the state legislature and the governorship, the adjustments largely eased access to the ballot box, whereas Republican-led Florida and Texas mostly focused on tightening the voting rules. And in Pennsylvania, where there's a divided government, compromise on voting changes has been hard to come by.

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President Joe Biden announced this week he and a bipartisan group of senators have reached a deal on infrastructure.

Need proof that bipartisanship exists in Congress? Here are 3 examples from this week.

While dysfunction is a common occurrence in Congress, this week finished with announcements on three bipartisan agreements.

Efforts to advance sweeping election reforms are stalled for now, but lawmakers have reached across the aisle to make progress on several other issues.

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