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Polarized politics has changed the dynamics of legislation and policymaking at the state and local level. Political parties with supermajorities are increasingly in control in many states and cities. These stories explain what that means for legislators, governors and mayors and how politicians can navigate this new political landscape.

More of today's public officials and candidates should remember the principles that Martin Luther King Jr. and his colleagues and supporters put their lives on the line for.
In the 30 years since Kirk Watson's previous stint as mayor, Austin has gained 400,000 more residents. Watson's changed, too.
A former federal judge explains why courts aren’t the fastest or clearest way to solve election disputes.
Democrats hope an abortion measure gives Biden a chance, but the Sunshine State remains pretty red. The outcome of the presidential race, meanwhile, may turn on a vote in Nebraska.
With their numbers up more than 50 percent since 2016, women have achieved near-parity on councils in 15 major cities. Salaries on those councils have climbed an average of 27 percent.
Democrats picked up four chambers in 2022 but struggle to get their voters to concentrate on down-ballot contests.
Redistricting used to happen every 10 years. Now, thanks to lawsuits and partisan competition, it's an ongoing battle throughout the decade.
American Indians were not granted citizenship by Congress until 1924. A prominent attorney discusses civil rights progress since then.
After serving for years as a top prosecutor, Liz Murrill was elected as AG last November. She spoke with Governing about some of her priorities.
Teachers aren't the only educators walking off the job. At least 30 percent of districts in every state have seen superintendent turnover in the past five years.
An attempt to recall D.C. Councilmember Charles Allen over the city’s rising crime has sparked tensions among a range of Capitol Hill denizens. Allen has been on the council since 2015.
Canceling the presidential primary cost Florida Democrats in local races. In Ohio, it looks like Jason Stephens will survive as state House speaker after contested primaries.
At the canvass of the Gillespie County GOP primary, election workers said poor penmanship, data entry lapses, transposed numbers and simple math mistakes led to discrepancies.
The idea behind the system was to help push candidates toward the broad middle of the electorate. The latest Senate contest exposed its flaws.
As concerns rise about crime and safety, Democratic leaders have been shifting to the right when it comes to criminal justice policies. Last month, 11 percent of Californians identified crime and drugs as the top issue.
Nonprofit groups have helped preserve access to abortion even in states where the procedure's been banned.
It’s hard to see recent moves by Georgia’s lieutenant governor as anything more than a Republican strategy to win some elections. But there’s an argument for embracing whatever bipartisanship is offered.
Only 116 of the nation’s nearly 7,400 state lawmakers qualify as “working class,” according to a new survey.
Gov. Jared Polis signed a bill that will allow legislators to discuss public business in small groups, or so-called serial meetings, and lawmakers will not have to announce them publicly. The law went into effect immediately.
GOP state lawmakers have often opposed new spending and infrastructure for public transit. The reasons have as much to do with the urban-rural divide as partisan ideology.
Make Liberty Win sent mailers throughout Ohio attacking Republican incumbents and sowing confusion among voters.
Dean Plocher faces two ethics hearings this week. The speaker has sought to promote particular vendors outside the normal procurement process.
In a sweeping State of the Union address before Congress, the president spotlighted the economic comeback under his administration and offered his plans for the future.
Tuesday's election results demonstrate voter antipathy towards crime. Meanwhile, the field is set in the year's most competitive race for governor and Texas has gotten redder.
Not only are they trying to rob voters of their voice, but what they’re doing highlights the state’s broken recall process.
Everyone knows this is a charged moment for election administration. A bipartisan committee has refreshed long-established ethical standards to help officials navigate current minefields.
Ken Paxton has filed lawsuits against Fisco, Denison and Castleberry school districts, alleging that they violated election law when officials suggested voting for candidates who oppose school vouchers.
A group backing a potential ballot question that would classify app-based drivers as independent contractors rather than employees has raised more than $6.8 million last year exclusively from non-resident companies.
Major tech firms have signed an accord to fight the deceptive use of AI in 2024 elections. It’s a welcome signal, if not a promise to solve the problem.
The city’s own study about Mayor London Breed’s proposal to make it more profitable to turn empty offices into new homes found that it is unlikely to drive significant savings under current market conditions.
California workers are allowed to sue employers for themselves and others if they believe they’ve been victims of wage theft under a unique state law. But a new ballot measure would replace the law if approved in November.