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INSTITUTE INDEX: Democratic senator from Virginia blocking key pro-union bill

April 29, 2021 - Three Democratic members of the evenly divided U.S. Senate have so far refused to sign on to the Protecting the Right to Organize Act, legislation endorsed by President Biden that would provide stronger protections for workers trying to form a union. Among the naysayers is Mark Warner of Virginia, the Senate's second-richest member and a venture capitalist with a nine-figure estimated net worth.

Confronting the anti-civil rights filibuster

March 24, 2021 - U.S. senators are currently considering whether to eliminate, reform, or protect the filibuster. The parliamentary procedure that gives the minority outsized power has a long history of being used to undermine civil rights legislation — and it now threatens to derail a bold Democratic agenda that includes voting rights and other pro-democracy reforms.

As states crack down on voting, advocates look to Congress

March 10, 2021 - Republican lawmakers nationwide have introduced over 250 bills this year to restrict voting access in 43 states — 39 bills in Georgia alone. Given the backlash against last year's record-breaking voter turnout playing out at the state level, voting rights advocates are looking to Congress and the promise of H.R. 1, which has now advanced to the U.S. Senate. But can it get past the filibuster?

INSTITUTE INDEX: What a $15 minimum wage would mean for the South

February 22, 2021 - The eight-year-old Fight for $15 movement is as close as it's ever been to winning the minimum wage law it's seeking, but barriers remain — including opposition from two Senate Democrats, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona. Here's who would benefit from raising the minimum wage to $15, and a look at the strong public support for the move.

Will Congress close the loophole that enabled Facebook's Russian ad scandal?

April 25, 2018 - The first peer-reviewed study of ads bought on Facebook to influence the 2016 election is renewing calls for Congress to pass the Honest Ads Act, which would close disclosure loopholes for political ads on social media. The stalled bill is opposed by groups including Americans for Prosperity and an anti-regulatory think tank with a connection to Senate leader Mitch McConnell.