On Tuesday, November 7th 2012 the United States of America reelected President Barack Obama, while the Democrats and Republics held on to their control of the Senate and the House, respectively. Historic victories and milestones in this year's election results include:
-President Barack Obama won re-election with 55% of women's votes and 45% of men's votes for a decisive and historic 10% gender gap, according to CNN exit polls.
-The 113th Congress will have 20 women Senators, the most in US History.
-Same sex marriage was legalized in Maine, Maryland and Washington via ballot measures -- marking the first time marriage equality has been won through the ballot.
-Minnesota rejected a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman -- marking the first time voters have rejected such a constitutional amendment.
-Tammy Baldwin was elected to the US Senate -- she is both the first woman elected to the US Senate from Wisconsin and the first openly lesbian/LGBT US Senator ever elected.
-Elizabeth Warren became the first woman ever elected to the US Senate from the state of Massachusetts.
-Colorado and Washington became the first states to legalize recreational marijuana. In Colorado, residents who are 21 or older can now use and possess an ounce of marijuana, and the state can regulate retail sales of the drug. In Washington, the state will now sell of small amounts of marijuana to people 21 and older, with sales tax.
-Maryland passed a state version of the DREAM Act -- the first act of its kind passed.
-New Hampshire elected the first-ever all-women congressional delegation.
-Mazie Hirono is the first Asian-American woman elected to the US Senate.
-Tulsi Gabbard is the first Hindu ever elected to the US House.
Media Resources: Huffington Post 11/07/2012; Feminist News Wire 11/07/2012
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .