CategoryFederal

Raphael Warnock (D) and Herschel Walker (R) are running in the runoff for U.S. Senate in Georgia

Incumbent Raphael Warnock (D) and Herschel Walker (R) are running in the runoff election for U.S. Senate in Georgia on December 6, 2022.

Warnock and Walker were the top-two vote-getters in the November 8, 2022, general election, with Warnock winning 49.4% of the vote to Walker’s 48.5%. Libertarian Chase Oliver won 2.1% of the vote and did not advance to the runoff. In Georgia, a general election advances to a runoff between the two top finishers if no candidate receives more than 50% of the vote.

This is the second Georgia Senate election in a row to go to a runoff. In 2020, Georgia held two elections for the U.S. Senate. In the regular election, incumbent U.S. Sen. David Perdue (R) and Jon Ossoff (D) advanced to a runoff after neither received the votes to win the general election outright. In the special election to replace U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson (R), Warnock and incumbent Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R)—whom Gov. Brian Kemp (R) appointed to fill the vacancy created when Isakson retired—advanced to a runoff for the same reason. The runoffs took place on January 5, 2021.

Warnock defeated Loeffler in the runoff and Ossoff defeated Perdue, giving Democrats an effective majority in the U.S. Senate (the partisan split following the runoffs was 50-50, with Vice President Kamala Harris (D) casting tie-breaking votes).

Unlike the 2021 runoffs, the 2022 runoff will not determine control of the U.S. Senate. Democrats won 50 Senate seats in the November 8 general election, enough to maintain effective control of the chamber. If Warnock wins, Democrats would expand their majority to 51.

Before assuming office, Warnock served as the senior pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. also served as pastor. Warnock’s campaign said, “As the 18th most bipartisan Senator, Reverend Warnock successfully negotiated investments for Georgia businesses to grow jobs in state and end our reliance on foreign countries like China, capped the cost of insulin for seniors to $35 a month, fought to keep open the Savannah Combat Readiness Training Center, and took on the shipping companies and big corporations making record prices while increasing costs for Georgians.”

Walker is a businessman and a Hall of Fame professional football player who represented the U.S. in the 1992 Olympics. Walker’s campaign said, “Herschel Walker is fully prepared to lower taxes and curb inflation, back law enforcement and fight back against crime. He will secure our border from drugs and illegal immigrants and take men out of women’s sports.”

As a result of a change in Georgia state law, the 2022 runoffs will take place on December 6, not January 5. On March 25, 2021, Gov. Kemp signed Senate Bill 202, which shortened the time between a general election and a runoff from nine weeks to 28 days.

As of November 22, the U.S. Senate election in Georgia ranked as the second most expensive Senate election in 2022 and the fourth most expensive Senate race ever. According to data from Open Secrets, candidate campaign committees and satellite spending groups had spent $307 million in the race.

Including the 2021 runoffs, four Senate runoffs have taken place in Georgia. The first Senate runoff occurred in 1992. Incumbent Wyche Fowler (D) lost to Paul Coverdell (R) in that election.  In 2008, incumbent Saxby Chambliss (R) won re-election after defeating Jim Martin (D) in a runoff.



U.S. weekly unemployment insurance claims rise to 225,000

New applications for U.S. unemployment insurance benefits rose 7,000 for the week ending November 5 to a seasonally adjusted 225,000. The previous week’s figure was revised up from 217,000 to 218,000. The four-week moving average as of November 5 fell to 218,750 from a revised 219,000 as of the week ending October 29.

The number of continuing unemployment insurance claims, which refers to the number of unemployed workers who filed for benefits at least two weeks ago and are actively receiving unemployment benefits, rose 6,000 from the previous week’s revised number to a seasonally adjusted 1.493 million for the week ending October 29. Reporting for continuing claims lags one week.

Unemployment insurance is a joint federal and state program that provides temporary monetary benefits to eligible laid-off workers who are actively seeking new employment. Qualifying individuals receive unemployment compensation as a percentage of their lost wages in the form of weekly cash benefits while they search for new employment.

The federal government oversees the general administration of state unemployment insurance programs. The states control the specific features of their unemployment insurance programs, such as eligibility requirements and length of benefits.

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Unemployment insurance

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Federal Register weekly update: More than 20,000 notices issued so far in 2022

Image of the south facade of the White House.

The Federal Register is a daily journal of federal government activity that includes presidential documents, proposed and final rules, and public notices. It is a common measure of an administration’s regulatory activity, accounting for both regulatory and deregulatory actions.

From November 14 through November 18, the Federal Register grew by 2,682 pages for a year-to-date total of 70,700 pages.

The Federal Register hit an all-time high of 95,894 pages in 2016.

This week’s Federal Register featured the following 592 documents:

  1. 469 notices
  2. Five presidential documents
  3. 41 proposed rules
  4. 77 final rules

Seven proposed rules, including revisions to natural disaster procedures from the Engineers Corps, and six final rules, including amendments to regulations under the Privacy Act of 1974 from the Homeland Security Department were deemed significant under E.O. 12866—defined by the potential to have large impacts on the economy, environment, public health, or state or local governments. Significant actions may also conflict with presidential priorities or other agency rules. The Biden administration has issued 202 significant proposed rules, 219 significant final rules, and four significant notices as of November 18.

Ballotpedia maintains page counts and other information about the Federal Register as part of its Administrative State Project. The project is a neutral, nonpartisan encyclopedic resource that defines and analyzes the administrative state, including its philosophical origins, legal and judicial precedents, and scholarly examinations of its consequences. The project also monitors and reports on measures of federal government activity.

Additional reading:

Click here to find yearly information about additions to the Federal Register from 1936 to 2019: https://ballotpedia.org/Historical_additions_to_the_Federal_Register,_1936-2019



Seven new U.S. senators and 77 new U.S. representatives won election to the 118th Congress

As of November 16, 2022, 84 new members have won election to the 118th Congress, including seven U.S. senators and 77 U.S. representatives. For comparison, 71 new members were elected to Congress in the 2020 election and subsequent runoffs, including nine U.S. senators and 62 U.S. representatives. 102 new members were elected to Congress in the 2018 election and subsequent runoffs, including nine U.S. senators and 93 U.S. representatives.

All seven new U.S. senators elected in 2022—one Democrat and six Republicans—replaced retiring incumbents from the same party. Twenty-four of the new U.S. representatives elected in 2022—12 Democrats and 12 Republicans—replaced 16 Democratic incumbents and eight Republican incumbents who either announced they would not seek re-election in 2022, withdrew from their races, or passed away while in office. 

Eighteen of the new U.S. representatives elected in 2022—eight Democrats and ten Republicans—replaced ten Democratic incumbents and eight Republican incumbents who ran for other offices instead of running for reelection. 

Due to redistricting, 14 incumbent U.S. representatives—eight Democrats and six Republicans—sought re-election in different congressional districts in 2022 than they represented in 2020. In addition, five of the seven new congressional districts created during the reapportionment process after the 2020 U.S. Census resulted in the election of new members. To fill these 19 seats, nine Democrats and eight Republicans were elected in 2022. As of November 16, 2022, two races that may result in new members of Congress due to redistricting remain uncalled.

16 incumbents—six Democrats and ten Republicans—lost their races for re-election in 2022 in either the primary or general election. Six Democrats and ten Republicans were elected to fill these seats. 



Federal Register weekly update: 480 documents added

The Federal Register is a daily journal of federal government activity that includes presidential documents, proposed and final rules, and public notices. It is a common measure of an administration’s regulatory activity, accounting for both regulatory and deregulatory actions.

From November 4 through November 11, the Federal Register grew by 1,084 pages for a year-to-date total of 68,018 pages.

The Federal Register hit an all-time high of 95,894 pages in 2016.

This week’s Federal Register featured the following 480 documents:

  1. 397 notices
  2. Five presidential documents
  3. 40 proposed rules
  4. 38 final rules

Three proposed rules, including a proposal to lift the moratorium on licensing Small Business Lending Companies and remove the Loan Authorization requirement from the Small Business Administration, and two final rules, including revisions to the End-Stage Renal Disease Prospective Payment System for calendar year 2023 from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services were deemed significant under E.O. 12866—defined by the potential to have large impacts on the economy, environment, public health, or state or local governments. Significant actions may also conflict with presidential priorities or other agency rules. The Biden administration has issued 195 significant proposed rules, 213 significant final rules, and four significant notices as of November 11.

Ballotpedia maintains page counts and other information about the Federal Register as part of its Administrative State Project. The project is a neutral, nonpartisan encyclopedic resource that defines and analyzes the administrative state, including its philosophical origins, legal and judicial precedents, and scholarly examinations of its consequences. The project also monitors and reports on measures of federal government activity.

Additional reading:

Click here to find yearly information about additions to the Federal Register from 1936 to 2019: https://ballotpedia.org/Historical_additions_to_the_Federal_Register,_1936-2019



U.S. Rep. Vicente Gonzalez Jr. (D) defeats U.S. Rep. Mayra Flores (R) in TX-34

U.S. Rep. Vicente Gonzalez Jr. (D) defeated U.S. Rep. Mayra Flores (R) in the general election for Texas’ 34th Congressional District on Nov. 8, 2022. This election was one of two U.S. House races in which two incumbents faced off in the general election.

Texas’ congressional district boundaries were redrawn after the 2020 census. According to data from Daily Kos, voters in the redrawn 34th District backed Joe Biden (D) over Donald Trump (R) 57.3% to 41.8% in the 2020 presidential election.

Gonzalez was first elected to represent Texas’ 15th Congressional District in 2016. Gonzalez’s campaign website said, “Vicente has stood by our promise to veterans, helping constituents cut through red tape at the VA and working across the aisle to prevent the shameful deportation of our honorably discharged veterans. He’s working to lower prescription drug prices, protect the benefits and healthcare of seniors, and ensure that jobs and opportunities are there for all with the ganas to work. … As a Congressman, he is delivering billions to support our schools, families, and small businesses and continues helping South Texans recover the federal benefits they are owed.”

Flores was elected to represent the old 34th district in a June 2022 special election to fill the seat vacated by Rep. Filemon Vela (D). Flores’ campaign website stated, “As the first Mexican-born woman to serve in Congress, I am fighting for opportunity and security for all those living in our amazing district. Our America First policies resonate with the Hispanic community and others who live in this district. For over 100 years, the Democrat Party has taken for granted the loyalty and support South Texas has given them for decades. But they do nothing to earn our vote or our support. And meanwhile, President Biden is killing Texas jobs, weakening border security, and weakening our standing in the world. Enough is enough.”

The Texas Tribune‘s Matthew Choi described the race as “a high-drama, multi-month affair of desperate pleas, dashed hopes and political gamesmanship that highlighted the stakes of when national forces come into play in a hyperlocal race.”

According to Insider‘s Hanna Kang and Dorothy Cucci, “As of early November, several dozen super PACs, national party committees, politically active nonprofits, and other non-candidate groups … together spent about $10.9 million to advocate for or against candidates in this race, including during the race’s primary phase. The Congressional Leadership Fund, a national Republican hybrid PAC that backs Flores, alone [accounted] for nearly half that spending.”

All 435 House districts were up for election on Nov. 8.



U.S. Rep. Neal Dunn (R) defeats U.S. Rep. Al Lawson (D) in FL-02

U.S. Rep. Neal Dunn (R) defeated U.S. Rep. Al Lawson (D) in the general election for Florida’s 2nd Congressional District on Nov. 8, 2022. Dunn received 60% of the vote to Lawson’s 40%. This election was one of two U.S. House races in which two incumbents faced off in the general election.

Florida’s congressional district boundaries were redrawn after the 2020 census. According to data from Daily Kos, voters in the redrawn 2nd District backed Donald Trump (R) over Joe Biden (D) 55% to 44% in the 2020 presidential election.

Dunn, who was first elected to represent the old 2nd District in 2016, told the Tallahassee Democrat, “My conservative principles are more in line with the people of Florida-02. … One of the many things I would like to accomplish in the next congressional session is stopping the Biden Administration’s failed policies that are driving up inflation.” Dunn said, “The Biden administration’s decisions and actions are a reckless, unnecessary disaster, choking off opportunity for everybody in America, and Al votes with this President 100% of the time. … I have and will continue to offer this district steadfast, conservative, Republican leadership to work to unleash the potential for the American economy.”

Lawson was first elected to represent Florida’s 5th Congressional District in 2016. He said, “I have served North Florida since 1982, first in the Legislature and now Congress. I put policy ahead of politics to get results[.] … From my time in the Florida Legislature until now in Congress, I have prided myself in working across party lines to make positive change for North Florida.” According to Politico‘s Gary Fineout, Lawson “tried to appeal to north Florida voters by stressing his ability to win federal funding for hometown projects as well as hitting Dunn over his vote in opposition to a new law that expands health care benefits for veterans.”

All 435 House districts were up for election on November 8.



Monica De La Cruz (R) defeated Michelle Vallejo (D) and Ross Lynn Leone (L) in Texas’ 15th Congressional District

Monica De La Cruz (R) defeated Michelle Vallejo (D) and Ross Lynn Leone (L) in the general election for Texas’ 15th Congressional District on November 8, 2022. De La Cruz is the first Republican to be elected to represent the district since it was created following the 1990 Census.

Texas’ 15th district was redrawn during redistricting after the 2020 Census to include a region of South Texas along the U.S.-Mexico border in the Rio Grande Valley. The New York Times called it “the only competitive House seat left in Texas.” Former President Donald Trump (R) endorsed De La Cruz. Her campaign focused on border security and opposition to abortion. De La Cruz discussed cultural issues as well, saying, “South Texas is not woke, but they are awakened.”

Matthew Choi and Stephen Neukam of The Texas Tribune wrote, “In the most competitive congressional race in the state, De La Cruz pushed ahead to victory, riding the momentum of a better-than-expected run in 2020 and a wave of outside funding from national Republicans eager to gain new ground in the region…De La Cruz defeated Democrat Michelle Vallejo, a political newcomer who ran on a platform of progressive social policy and close family ties to the region. Vallejo had run an aggressive ground operation and was able to rally handsome donations from across the state. But she faced a death knell after less-than-favorable forecasts led national Democrats to dedicate their resources to protecting incumbents and supporting more promising races.”

Daily Kos calculated what the results of the 2020 presidential election in this district would have been following redistricting. Joe Biden (D) would have received 48.1% of the vote in this district and Donald Trump (R) would have received 51.0%.



OIRA reviewed 43 significant rules in October

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In October 2022, the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) reviewed 43 significant regulatory actions issued by federal agencies. OIRA approved five of these rules with no changes and approved the intent of 35 rules while recommending changes to their content. Three rules were withdrawn from the review process by the issuing agency.

OIRA reviewed 42 significant regulatory actions in October 2021, 53 significant regulatory actions in October 2020, 45 significant regulatory actions in October 2019, 43 significant regulatory actions in October 2018, and 25 significant regulatory actions in October 2017.

OIRA has reviewed a total of 393 significant rules in 2022. The agency reviewed a total of 502 significant rules in 2021, 676 significant rules in 2020, 475 significant rules in 2019, 355 significant rules in 2018, and 237 significant rules in 2017.

As of November 1, 2022, OIRA’s website listed 116 regulatory actions under review.

​​OIRA is responsible for reviewing and coordinating what it deems to be all significant regulatory actions made by federal agencies, with the exception of independent federal agencies. Significant regulatory actions include agency rules that have had or may have a large impact on the economy, environment, public health, or state and local governments and communities. These regulatory actions may also conflict with other regulations or with the priorities of the president.

OIRA: https://ballotpedia.org/U.S._Office_of_Information_and_Regulatory_Affairs 



Federal Register weekly update: More than 400 significant documents issued so far in 2022

The Federal Register is a daily journal of federal government activity that includes presidential documents, proposed and final rules, and public notices. It is a common measure of an administration’s regulatory activity, accounting for both regulatory and deregulatory actions.

From October 31 through November 4, the Federal Register grew by 1,416 pages for a year-to-date total of 66,934 pages.

The Federal Register hit an all-time high of 95,894 pages in 2016.

This week’s Federal Register featured the following 545 documents:

  1. 441 notices
  2. 11 presidential documents
  3. 37 proposed rules
  4. 56 final rules

Six proposed rules, including an amendment to the color additive regulation to increase the certification services fee from the Food and Drug Administration, and five final rules, including amendments to regulations regarding the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program, the Federal Perkins Loan, and the Federal Family Education Loan Program from the Education Department were deemed significant under E.O. 12866—defined by the potential to have large impacts on the economy, environment, public health, or state or local governments. Significant actions may also conflict with presidential priorities or other agency rules. The Biden administration has issued 192 significant proposed rules, 211 significant final rules, and four significant notices as of November 4.

Ballotpedia maintains page counts and other information about the Federal Register as part of its Administrative State Project. The project is a neutral, nonpartisan encyclopedic resource that defines and analyzes the administrative state, including its philosophical origins, legal and judicial precedents, and scholarly examinations of its consequences. The project also monitors and reports on measures of federal government activity.

Additional reading:

Click here to find yearly information about additions to the Federal Register from 1936 to 2019: https://ballotpedia.org/Historical_additions_to_the_Federal_Register,_1936-2019