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Nicole Lafond is TPM’s associate editor, based in New York. She has also worked as the special projects editor and as a senior newswriter for TPM. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University and previously covered education in central Illinois.
Where Things Stand: Bipartisan Agreement On Badness Prime Badge
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The most obviously bad parts of the Georgia voting law are seen, by voters of both parties, as obviously bad, according to a new poll.

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Where Things Stand: White Gun Couple Clings To Relevance Prime Badge
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Armed homeowners Mark T. and Patricia N. McCloskey stand in front their house as they confront protesters marching to St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson's house on June 28, 2020. The protesters called for Krewson's resignation for releasing the names and addresses of residents who suggested defunding the police department. (Laurie Skrivan/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/TNS)

Derek Chauvin was found guilty on all counts in the murder of George Floyd last night, the first verdict of its kind in a landmark case that inspired a wave of protests across the nation last summer against police brutality and systemic racism.

A few hours later, the St. Louis lawyer?Mark McCloskey — who become known for standing barefoot outside his home alongside his wife last summer as the two pointed weapons at peaceful Black Lives Matter protesters — told Politico that he was considering a Senate bid in Missouri.

“I can confirm that it’s a consideration, yes,” McCloskey reportedly said Tuesday evening.

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Where Things Stand: Bush Describes Modern-Day GOP As ‘Nativist’ Prime Badge
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BENTON HARBOR, MI - MAY 28: Former President George W. Bush speaks at the Economic Club of Southwestern Michigan May 28, 2009 in Benton Harbor, Michigan. Bush was to discuss his presidency and life, as well as the economy and world events in his first speech since leaving office. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

“It’s not exactly my vision,” former President George W. Bush said of his Party during a live interview with NBC’s “Today” show this morning.

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Where Things Stand: A Return To The Other Very American Problem Prime Badge
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DAYTON, OH - AUGUST 5:Samuel Klug, L, and John Neff place candles around a makeshift memorial at the scene of a mass shooting in the city's historic Oregon District where Connor Betts used an "AR-15-like" rifle about 24 hours earlier to kill nine people, including his sister, and injure 27 others, on Monday, August 5, 2019, in Dayton, OH. Neff's friend is one of the 27 people injured, shot through the hand. "I've never been through something like this before," Neff said. "This is pretty painful. I don't have kids, but I would hate to be feeling what a parent is going through right now. This is awful." He added, "I don't think thoughts and prayers are going to protect us anymore. I don't think they ever have. We need some gun laws that are going to protect us, and protect our husbands and wives and kids. I think we need people in power that are going to protect our future. If we continue to let this happen, who knows if we're going to have a future." The attack came less than a day after a man with a high-powered weapon killed 20 people in El Paso, Texas, and a week after a gunman killed three people and wounded 12 at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in California. (Photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post).

The pandemic has brought to a head the complexities of one very uniquely American problem: the emphasis we as a country put on individual freedoms, which, this past year, has repeatedly run headlong into the need to care for our fellow man during a global health crisis.

It’s also revealed in new ways a more depressing American problem: mass shootings.

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Where Things Stand: Anti-Trans Bills Are The GOP’s New Culture War. But Most Americans Aren’t On Board Prime Badge
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TIMES SQUARE NYC, NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES - 2017/07/26: On July 26, 2017, after a series of tweets by President Donald Trump, which proposed to ban transgender people from military service, thousands of New Yorkers took the streets of in opposition. Thousands of transgender soldiers are currently serving in all branches of the United States Armed forces. (Photo by Michael Nigro/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Without any real policy agenda, Republicans in Congress have largely seized on various fronts in the culture war to distract from Biden’s successes. And GOPers at the state level are doing the same, with a new heightened focus on an element of their socially conservative base’s traditional values: Going after the LGBT community.

Lately, that’s meant a fresh wave of anti-trans rights bills.

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Where Things Stand: Fortunately, It’s Not Just The Insurrectionists Prime Badge
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ATLANTA, GA - OCTOBER 21: Democratic U.S. senatorial candidate Raphael Warnock walks to State Farm Arena to cast his ballot on October 21, 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images)

While the Republican ringleaders of the Big Lie have seemingly?fundraised in a big way following their efforts to overturn the results of the election, at least one Democrat is raking in substantial cash for doing, sort of, the opposite.

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Where Things Stand: GOP Acknowledges Asian Hate Crime Bill Might Not Be Right Time To Force First Filibuster Prime Badge
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Many Senate Republicans nonetheless argued the bill wasn’t necessary in the first place.

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Where Things Stand: An Old Man With A Grudge Still Runs The Show Prime Badge
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on October 16, 2017 in Washington, DC.

And Senate Republicans know it.?

All hope of retaking the majority in the Senate lies with the former president’s ability to put aside his personal grievances for the sake of the Party.?

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Where Things Stand: That Raised Fist Pays Off Prime Badge
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Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) is learning that, in 2021, sowing distrust in basic functions of democracy can be good electoral politics.

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