Welcome to Wednesday, August 10, Brew.
By: Samuel Wonacott
Here is what awaits you to start your day:
- 31 states have no restrictions on who can purchase voter registry data
- Final incumbent vs. incumbent primary to come at NY-12
- Texas State Board of Education Discusses Changes to State Social Studies Curriculum
31 states have no restrictions on who can purchase voter registry data
In 2002, Congress passed and President George W. Bush (R) signed the Help America Vote (HAVA). The law requires states to create centralized electronic voter registration files.
What is an electoral register? An electoral register generally contains the names and addresses of voters and a record of the elections in which they participated. And while the file can show when someone voted in a given election, it doesn’t reveal which candidates voters voted for. The file may also contain ages, phone numbers, email addresses, political party affiliations, past political donations and other consumer data. Because voter records contain information on thousands of voters, they can be useful resources for political parties, campaigns, pollsters, academic researchers, and journalists.
Voter Record data is available for purchase in all US states and Washington, DC Each state has developed its own guidelines regarding the sale of voter registration data. Indeed, the cost of purchasing voter records can range from $0 in 11 states to $37,000 in Alabama!
Additionally, the types of individuals and groups allowed to purchase voter records and the type of data included in those records also vary from state to state.
In a 2016 reportthe United States Election Assistance Commission has classified the availability of voter file information in each state as open, mixed, or restricted, based on the type of individuals or groups permitted to purchase the data.
- Thirty-one states have open availability, meaning they have no restrictions on the types of individuals and groups who can purchase their voter roll data.
- Sixteen states have mixed availability, meaning that certain types of individuals or groups may purchase information from voter roll data that is not available to others. In a case like this, a state can limit voter contact information to government officials, but allow anyone access to voter history and political party information.
- Four states have restricted availability, meaning only certain types of individuals or groups are allowed to purchase voter record data.
The map below provides a summary of voter file availability for each state and Washington, DC as of August 2022.The table below shows sample voter roll availability and pricing, as well as the information included in the roll, in a handful of states. Click the link below to find availability and pricing in your state.
Final incumbent vs. incumbent primary to come at NY-12
New York will hold primaries on August 23. One of these primaries is the last of six in the country this year with two US House incumbents.
U.S. Representative Carolyn Maloney, U.S. Representative Jerry Nadler, Suraj Patel and Ashmi Sheth run in the Democratic primary for New York’s 12th congressional district on August 23. Maloney, Nadler and Patel lead the endorsements, funding and media attention.
The United States Constitution does not require that members of the United States House live in the district they represent. When district lines change during redistricting, some United States House incumbents end up running for re-election in the same congressional district as another United States House member.
Maloney represents the 12th District as it was drawn before the redistricting, and Nadler represents the old 10th District. Heading into the election, Maloney represents 61% of the population of the redesigned 12th District and Nadler represents 39%.
Both representatives were first elected in 1992. Maloney chairs the Oversight and Government Reform Committee and Nadler chairs the Judiciary Committee. Both Maloney and Nadler are members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.
Patel, an attorney, was a campaign staffer for Barack Obama’s (D) presidential campaigns. Patel challenged Maloney in 2018 and 2020, getting 40% of the vote to Maloney’s 60% in 2018 and 39% to Maloney’s 43% in 2020.
Leading independent observers rate the general election as solid democrat Where sure democratic.
Two general elections for the United States House will feature multiple incumbents as a result of redistricting or special elections. These are found in Florida’s 2nd congressional district and Texas’ 34th.
You can read more about the United States House elections with multiple incumbents here. Click below to learn more about the Democratic primary in New York’s 12th congressional district.
Texas State Board of Education Discusses Changes to State Social Studies Curriculum
Let’s move on to a story related to Texas education. Be sure to subscribe to Hall passour weekly newsletter on school board politics and education policy, for more stories like this!
At an Aug. 1 meeting, the Texas State Board of Education began discussing proposed changes to the state’s social studies curriculum, specifically U.S. history, that would align with the draft. Senate Bill 3. Senate Bill 3, which took effect in December 2021, prohibits teaching what it defines as divisive concepts. Examples include promoting the ideas that “one race or sex is inherently superior to another race or sex” and that “an individual, because of their race or sex, is inherently racist, sexist or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously”.
The state board is responsible for updating the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) program standards every eight years.
Senator Bryan Hughes (R), author of Senate Bill 3, addressed the council to offer advice on the implementation of the law in the program. Hughes said the “bill is not an attempt to sanitize or teach our history in any way other than the truth – the good, the bad and the ugly – and those hard things that we have been through and those things that we have overcome. He also said: ‘No one is saying we don’t have systemic racism. But what we are saying is that we have made a lot of progress. We have a long way to go. But the way to get there is to come together as Americans.
State Board of Education member Aicha Davis (D) argued that Senate Bill 3 hurt the public school system. She said: ‘We always talk about teachers leaving in droves and that’s one of the reasons. She responded to Hughes’ advice on aligning the curriculum with the law by saying, “Teachers were literally scared to teach even the TEKS that existed because of it.”
Proposed program updates are available for review on the Texas Education Agency website and are open to public comment. The Texas State Board of Education will vote on proposed changes to the curriculum in November.
Find out who sets the K-12 curriculum in public schools in all 50 states by clicking the link below.