President Biden Needlessly Trails Trump on Judicial Confirmations

It’s a bittersweet time to reflect on President Biden and Senate Majority Leader Schumer’s legacy for our federal courts.  

On one hand, this administration and Senate majority are unrivaled in adding diversity to the federal bench. On the other hand, Biden and Schumer are now falling behind Trump and McConnell’s pace of confirmations.

Let’s confirm the president’s nominees and fill the vacancies where obstruction is impossible.  

The Last Two Years Saw Record Wins for Women in Politics Worldwide. How Can Election Rules and Voting Systems Shape Opportunities for Women?

While the U.S. is making slow progress toward political parity, other countries are making more significant gains over time.

This month, RepresentWomen released the Golden Year Analysis, which identified the factors influencing global progress toward gender parity in politics in 2021 and 2022. Of 85 countries that held elections in these years, 43 achieved a “golden year” by electing a record-high number of women to their national legislatures.

While this is certainly cause for celebration, gender-balanced governance remains far from reach for many countries, including the United States. 

This November, Abortion Is on the Ballot in Ohio. Here’s What You Need to Know to Vote

This November, Ohioans will decide whether to add to the state’s constitution the right for individuals to make their own reproductive healthcare decisions, including abortion. Early voting in the election has already begun. 

A coalition of reproductive, women’s and civil rights organizations, Ohioans United for Reproductive Rights, is urging voters to vote YES on Issue 1 to protect reproductive freedom.

Ohioans, here’s all you need to know about how to vote in this election.

We’ve Gone Over the Childcare Cliff. Now What?

On Sept. 30, Congress let federal childcare stabilization grant funding expire. What happens next?

First, providers will be forced to raise tuition prices to offset the loss of stabilization grants. Then, staffing shortages. Finally, childcare programs—as many as 70,000 by our projections—will have to shut down altogether.

The good news: If Congress can get their act together to fund emergency childcare before the end of the calendar year, they can stem the worst of these consequences.

Keeping Score: Activist Narges Mohammadi and Economist Claudia Goldin Awarded Nobel Prizes; U.S. Scores a C for Protection of LGBTQ+ Rights

In every issue of Ms., we track research on our progress in the fight for equality, catalogue can’t-miss quotes from feminist voices and keep tabs on the feminist movement’s many milestones. We’re Keeping Score online, too—in this biweekly roundup.

This week: Federal funding for childcare expired on Oct. 1; Iranian activist and feminist economist are honored with Nobel Prizes; gunman fires two rounds into Planned Parenthood clinic in Montana; California to protect abortion providers from out-of-state lawsuits; Republicans in Congress attempt to repeal FACE Act protecting abortion clinics; cost of raising a child in the U.S. skyrockets; Latina women hit hardest by state-level abortion bans; and more.

The 2024 Election Will Be a Referendum on Abortion and Women’s Equality, According to New Ms. Poll

Next year’s election will see many voters turn out who are motivated by abortion and equal rights for women, according to a new poll by Lake Research Partners for Ms. and the Feminist Majority Foundation, publisher of Ms.  The poll showed that abortion and the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) are strong voter turnout issues separately, but even more powerful when combined.

Candidates talking about abortion and the ERA together are particularly mobilizing for Democrat and Independent voters—especially Independent women, younger women, voters who support abortion rights, college-educated women, Latinas and Black voters, and voters ages 30-39. 

The Trump Trials Are Set to Begin in Georgia

Kenneth Chesebro and Sidney Powell—both former lawyers for Trump—were indicted by a Fulton County grand jury in mid-August, alongside 17 others, including Trump himself. All 19 co-defendants are charged under Georgia’s Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act.

On Thursday, Oct. 19, Powell pleaded guilty to six misdemeanor counts—five counts of conspiracy to commit intentional interference with performance of election duties, and one count of conspiracy to commit theft—making her the second defendant to flip on Trump and cooperate with prosecutors. Powell was supposed to go to trial on Monday with co-defendant Chesebro. With Powell’s plea deal, Chesebro will go to trial solo next week.

“The basic thrust is, is that while all of those defendants did slightly different things and engaged in slightly different discrete acts of criminal activity, they all were engaged in one unlawful purpose, which was to overturn the 2020 election,” said Anthony Michael Kreis, a professor at the Georgia State University College of Law, on a recent episode of On the Issues with Michele Goodwin.