The Roeder Trial: Day Five

Carolyn Marie Fugit

Day five of the Roeder trial: Scott Roeder, in his testimony today, decided as far back as 1993 that Dr. George Tiller needed to die.

Scott Roeder, in his testimony Thursday, decided as far back as 1993 that Dr. George
Tiller needed to die. He thought of several different ways
to do it. He could not do it outside the clinic. He drove by the neighborhood
where Dr. Tiller lived but could not get in. He could not do it at the Sedgwick
County Courthouse while Dr. Tiller was on trial. In August 2008, he went into
Reformation Lutheran Church with a Smith and Wesson 9 millimeter gun in a
shoulder holster under his suit coat but did not see Dr. Tiller in order to
kill him. He pawned his 9 mm and an SKS Chinese assault rifle. On May 18th,
2009, he bought a Taurus P-22 caliber handgun, one that would fit in his pocket;
he picked it up on May 23rd, 2009, and then drove to Wichita to kill Dr. Tiller
in church on Sunday, May 24th. He did not see Dr. Tiller so drove back home to
Kansas City, Missouri. On May 29th, he spent some time with his son, going to
dinner and a movie. On May 30th, he bought more ammunition then drove to
Topeka. He visited his childhood neighborhood, wondering if a childhood
friend’s mother still lived there. He drove out to his brother’s, took target
practice, and when his gun stopped working right, took it in to get fixed and
bought more ammunition. He then drove towards Wichita, stopping to shoot on
occasion on his way. He carried the gun in with him on May 30th as he attended
Saturday night service. He did not see Dr. Tiller so he left, checked into a
nearby hotel, watched TV, ate dinner, prepared for the next day, and went to
bed. On Sunday morning, he checked out, drove to the church, backed into a
parking spot, went inside the church, and sat down, having not yet seen Dr.
Tiller. After service started, he saw Dr. Tiller leave the sanctuary and
followed. A few seconds later, he put the gun against Dr. Tiller’s head and
pulled the trigger. He ran out of the church. Realizing he was being followed,
he told Gary Hoepner to stop following, he had a gun. He got to his car, and as
he started to drive away, Keith Martin stepped in front of it. He told Martin
to move, and when Martin did not, repeated his instruction and said he had a
gun. Martin threw a cup of coffee into the car. Roeder drove out of Wichita and
stopped in "Valley View" for lunch and gas. He continued until he
reached Burlington where he changed out of the coffee-stained white shirt and
into a denim shirt. He wrapped the loaded gun in cloth, with the intention of
retrieving it someday, and buried it in a pile of dirt. He then continued back
home to Kansas City, Missouri. At some point, he told his attorneys where he
had hidden the gun, but when they returned, the pile of dirt – along with the
loaded gun used to kill Dr. Tiller and threaten both Hoepner and Martin – was

After testimony Wednesday, the prosecution refused to
rest until such time as the defense proffered – offered testimony outside the
presence of the jury – their witnesses. After some arguments regarding one of
the witnesses, former Kansas Attorney General Phil Kline came in to deliver
what the defense expected him to testify to. After wandering off-topic a couple
of times, venturing into inappropriate testimony regarding legal investigations
that are protected and flat out saying Dr. Tiller performed illegal abortions –
charges which were dismissed and others for which Dr. Tiller was acquitted –
Kline was asked to leave while the court discussed whether he would be allowed
to testify. Judge Warren Wilbert ruled he had nothing to offer that would be
within the scope of a murder trial and would not help Roeder’s defense, saying
"As I sat here and listened to Phil Kline testify, … It’s exactly what
this court seeks to avoid." With no more witnesses for the defense to
proffer, the state rested at 11:07 am.

Public Defender Steve Osburn delivered his opening
statement. Roeder, he said, felt Dr. Tiller "broke the spirit of the
law" when he performed late abortions for reasons of mental health of the
woman. A preview of the rest of the day, Osburn outlined Roeder’s beliefs and
actions, saying Scott Roeder fired one shot into Dr. Tiller. He also threatened
both Hoepner and Martin before heading out of town.

The defense called one witness: Scott P. Roeder. Before
the jury came in, Roeder was asked for the record if he waived his right
against self-incrimination as guaranteed under the Fifth Amendment. He was told
he would have to answer all questions asked of him and could not confer with
his attorneys. He agreed and took the stand. After learning he was born in
Denver, Colorado, he was asked if he had sat through the whole trial and if he
did not dispute the evidence with "very, very few exceptions." Roeder
said this is true.

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Roeder was not really religious as a child and did not
consider himself Christian. In 1992, while watching The 700 Club, Roeder decided to give himself over to Jesus Christ.
He describes himself as "born-again." While he had always thought
abortion was wrong, he did not become interested in it until around that time.
In 1993, Rachelle "Shelley" Shannon shot Dr. Tiller. Around this
time, Roeder determined the only way to stop abortion–"the killing of
children" as he put it–was to kill Dr. Tiller. He never focused on any
other abortion provider. He visited Shannon in prison and began to protest at a
clinic in the Kansas City area, offering "sidewalk counseling". He
did not see himself as protesting but that some people held signs and did
protest alongside the counseling. During this time, he met like-minded people
who also believed in murdering providers, though he did not discuss it with
just anyone outside the clinic. He said no one tried to talk him out of
killing, though he did not tell anyone he planned on killing Dr. Tiller.

Over the years, he thought of many different ways to kill
Dr. Tiller including chopping his hands off with a sword. He decided this would
not put an end to abortion as Dr. Tiller could still teach others. He also
thought about assassinating Dr. Tiller with a sniper rifle, but this plan had
problems. He thought about killing Dr. Tiller at his home, but his home was
inside a gated community and he could not get in. He felt the only place Dr.
Tiller was vulnerable, his only "window of opportunity," was to kill
Dr. Tiller at church where he would not be in his armored car, be without a
bulletproof vest, and without a bodyguard.

In 2000, he began traveling to Wichita to protest outside
Women’s Health Care Services. He also protested outside Reformation Lutheran
Church a couple of times. In 2002, he parked his car by St. George’s Orthodox
Cathedral, right next to Reformation Lutheran, and walked over to the church. A
law enforcement officer stopped him and asked what he was doing there. Roeder
said he was moving to Wichita and was looking for a new church. When asked if
he knew Dr. Tiller went there, he said he did not know whom Dr. Tiller was.
Roeder did not return to Reformation Lutheran for a few years. In August of
2008, he began visiting the church again. He caused no ruckus and no
disruptions. He wanted the people in the church to trust him, to feel
comfortable with him, so he could kill Dr. Tiller there. As Gary Hoepner
testified, Roeder succeeded in this mission. He carried a gun in with him on
August 24, 2008; May 24, 2009; May 30, 2009; and May 31, 2009. He feels no
regret for killing Dr. Tiller. And after he did, he simply tried to go home, at
one point even thinking he would go to work the next day.

As Roeder explained his position on abortion, he said his
religious beliefs and opinions on abortion "go hand-in-hand." From
conception forward, he explained, "It is not man’s job to take life,"
only God’s, except for self-defense or the defense of others. He stated
uncertainty that abortion is acceptable to save a woman’s life. Other medical
exceptions are not acceptable, he said, only life, and certainly not mental
illness. Abortion is not acceptable to him in the case of incest and rape
because, "two wrongs don’t make a right."

At about 4:05 pm, Roeder finished testifying about his
murder of Dr. George Tiller and aggravated assaults of Gary Hoepner and Keith
Martin, and the defense rested. The jury is excused. We wait as the court, the
state, and the defense prepare for motions regarding jury instructions. During
this time, around 5:00, Mark Rudy informs the press that, shortly before Roeder
testified, they informed police the location of the gun. At that time,
authorities began a search in Burlington, KS.

As Wilbert introduced his draft proposal of the jury
instructions and voluntary manslaughter was not among them, the few pro-choice
activists left in the courtroom breathed a sigh of relief, one expressing even
more joy. The defense asked for the instruction, and arguments commenced. After
some arguments, Wilbert explained in detail – largely repeating previous
statements and case law – why he was denying the request. Most of the argument
revolved around imminence – that Roeder believed Dr. Tiller was an imminent
threat – though Wilbert stated he failed to prove this, even by his own
admission by stating he killed Dr. Tiller 22 hours before he would perform
another abortion. Wilbert quoted from the case that rather defines voluntary
manslaughter in Kansas, and in that ruling, 2 hours was not considered
"imminent." Wilbert then continued: justified use of deadly force
requires that the imminent threat be unlawful. And no matter what people
believe, abortion is legal and Roeder provided no information that Dr. Tiller
was breaking the law. He re-emphasized another case – one that dealt with
protesting Dr. Tiller many years before – that stated allowing any form of the
necessity defense would "not only lead to chaos but would be tantamount to
sanctioning anarchy."

The jury will return Friday morning to receive their
instructions – to convict or not on one count of first-degree premeditated
murder and two counts of aggravated assault – and hear closing arguments. We
may know as soon as Friday evening their verdict.

As we left the courthouse Thursday night, it began to
snow. It seemed as if the sky felt the cold
inside the courtroom coming from Scott Roeder and opened up on Wichita.

Analysis Politics

The 2016 Republican Platform Is Riddled With Conservative Abortion Myths

Ally Boguhn

Anti-choice activists and leaders have embraced the Republican platform, which relies on a series of falsehoods about reproductive health care.

Republicans voted to ratify their 2016 platform this week, codifying what many deem one of the most extreme platforms ever accepted by the party.

“Platforms are traditionally written by and for the party faithful and largely ignored by everyone else,” wrote the New York Times‘ editorial board Monday. “But this year, the Republicans are putting out an agenda that demands notice.”

“It is as though, rather than trying to reconcile Mr. Trump’s heretical views with conservative orthodoxy, the writers of the platform simply opted to go with the most extreme version of every position,” it continued. “Tailored to Mr. Trump’s impulsive bluster, this document lays bare just how much the G.O.P. is driven by a regressive, extremist inner core.”

Tucked away in the 66-page document accepted by Republicans as their official guide to “the Party’s principles and policies” are countless resolutions that seem to back up the Times‘ assertion that the platform is “the most extreme” ever put forth by the party, including: rolling back marriage equalitydeclaring pornography a “public health crisis”; and codifying the Hyde Amendment to permanently block federal funding for abortion.

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Anti-choice activists and leaders have embraced the platform, which the Susan B. Anthony List deemed the “Most Pro-life Platform Ever” in a press release upon the GOP’s Monday vote at the convention. “The Republican platform has always been strong when it comes to protecting unborn children, their mothers, and the conscience rights of pro-life Americans,” said the organization’s president, Marjorie Dannenfelser, in a statement. “The platform ratified today takes that stand from good to great.”  

Operation Rescue, an organization known for its radical tactics and links to violence, similarly declared the platform a “victory,” noting its inclusion of so-called personhood language, which could ban abortion and many forms of contraception. “We are celebrating today on the streets of Cleveland. We got everything we have asked for in the party platform,” said Troy Newman, president of Operation Rescue, in a statement posted to the group’s website.

But what stands out most in the Republicans’ document is the series of falsehoods and myths relied upon to push their conservative agenda. Here are just a few of the most egregious pieces of misinformation about abortion to be found within the pages of the 2016 platform:

Myth #1: Planned Parenthood Profits From Fetal Tissue Donations

Featured in multiple sections of the Republican platform is the tired and repeatedly debunked claim that Planned Parenthood profits from fetal tissue donations. In the subsection on “protecting human life,” the platform says:

We oppose the use of public funds to perform or promote abortion or to fund organizations, like Planned Parenthood, so long as they provide or refer for elective abortions or sell fetal body parts rather than provide healthcare. We urge all states and Congress to make it a crime to acquire, transfer, or sell fetal tissues from elective abortions for research, and we call on Congress to enact a ban on any sale of fetal body parts. In the meantime, we call on Congress to ban the practice of misleading women on so-called fetal harvesting consent forms, a fact revealed by a 2015 investigation. We will not fund or subsidize healthcare that includes abortion coverage.

Later in the document, under a section titled “Preserving Medicare and Medicaid,” the platform again asserts that abortion providers are selling “the body parts of aborted children”—presumably again referring to the controversy surrounding Planned Parenthood:

We respect the states’ authority and flexibility to exclude abortion providers from federal programs such as Medicaid and other healthcare and family planning programs so long as they continue to perform or refer for elective abortions or sell the body parts of aborted children.

The platform appears to reference the widely discredited videos produced by anti-choice organization Center for Medical Progress (CMP) as part of its smear campaign against Planned Parenthood. The videos were deceptively edited, as Rewire has extensively reported. CMP’s leader David Daleiden is currently under federal indictment for tampering with government documents in connection with obtaining the footage. Republicans have nonetheless steadfastly clung to the group’s claims in an effort to block access to reproductive health care.

Since CMP began releasing its videos last year, 13 state and three congressional inquiries into allegations based on the videos have turned up no evidence of wrongdoing on behalf of Planned Parenthood.

Dawn Laguens, executive vice president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund—which has endorsed Hillary Clinton—called the Republicans’ inclusion of CMP’s allegation in their platform “despicable” in a statement to the Huffington Post. “This isn’t just an attack on Planned Parenthood health centers,” said Laguens. “It’s an attack on the millions of patients who rely on Planned Parenthood each year for basic health care. It’s an attack on the brave doctors and nurses who have been facing down violent rhetoric and threats just to provide people with cancer screenings, birth control, and well-woman exams.”

Myth #2: The Supreme Court Struck Down “Commonsense” Laws About “Basic Health and Safety” in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt

In the section focusing on the party’s opposition to abortion, the GOP’s platform also reaffirms their commitment to targeted regulation of abortion providers (TRAP) laws. According to the platform:

We salute the many states that now protect women and girls through laws requiring informed consent, parental consent, waiting periods, and clinic regulation. We condemn the Supreme Court’s activist decision in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt striking down commonsense Texas laws providing for basic health and safety standards in abortion clinics.

The idea that TRAP laws, such as those struck down by the recent Supreme Court decision in Whole Woman’s Health, are solely for protecting women and keeping them safe is just as common among conservatives as it is false. However, as Rewire explained when Paul Ryan agreed with a nearly identical claim last week about Texas’ clinic regulations, “the provisions of the law in question were not about keeping anybody safe”:

As Justice Stephen Breyer noted in the opinion declaring them unconstitutional, “When directly asked at oral argument whether Texas knew of a single instance in which the new requirement would have helped even one woman obtain better treatment, Texas admitted that there was no evidence in the record of such a case.”

All the provisions actually did, according to Breyer on behalf of the Court majority, was put “a substantial obstacle in the path of women seeking a previability abortion,” and “constitute an undue burden on abortion access.”

Myth #3: 20-Week Abortion Bans Are Justified By “Current Medical Research” Suggesting That Is When a Fetus Can Feel Pain

The platform went on to point to Republicans’ Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, a piece of anti-choice legislation already passed in several states that, if approved in Congress, would create a federal ban on abortion after 20 weeks based on junk science claiming fetuses can feel pain at that point in pregnancy:

Over a dozen states have passed Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Acts prohibiting abortion after twenty weeks, the point at which current medical research shows that unborn babies can feel excruciating pain during abortions, and we call on Congress to enact the federal version.

Major medical groups and experts, however, agree that a fetus has not developed to the point where it can feel pain until the third trimester. According to a 2013 letter from the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, “A rigorous 2005 scientific review of evidence published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) concluded that fetal perception of pain is unlikely before the third trimester,” which begins around the 28th week of pregnancy. A 2010 review of the scientific evidence on the issue conducted by the British Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists similarly found “that the fetus cannot experience pain in any sense prior” to 24 weeks’ gestation.

Doctors who testify otherwise often have a history of anti-choice activism. For example, a letter read aloud during a debate over West Virginia’s ultimately failed 20-week abortion ban was drafted by Dr. Byron Calhoun, who was caught lying about the number of abortion-related complications he saw in Charleston.

Myth #4: Abortion “Endangers the Health and Well-being of Women”

In an apparent effort to criticize the Affordable Care Act for promoting “the notion of abortion as healthcare,” the platform baselessly claimed that abortion “endangers the health and well-being” of those who receive care:

Through Obamacare, the current Administration has promoted the notion of abortion as healthcare. We, however, affirm the dignity of women by protecting the sanctity of human life. Numerous studies have shown that abortion endangers the health and well-being of women, and we stand firmly against it.

Scientific evidence overwhelmingly supports the conclusion that abortion is safe. Research shows that a first-trimester abortion carries less than 0.05 percent risk of major complications, according to the Guttmacher Institute, and “pose[s] virtually no long-term risk of problems such as infertility, ectopic pregnancy, spontaneous abortion (miscarriage) or birth defect, and little or no risk of preterm or low-birth-weight deliveries.”

There is similarly no evidence to back up the GOP’s claim that abortion endangers the well-being of women. A 2008 study from the American Psychological Association’s Task Force on Mental Health and Abortion, an expansive analysis on current research regarding the issue, found that while those who have an abortion may experience a variety of feelings, “no evidence sufficient to support the claim that an observed association between abortion history and mental health was caused by the abortion per se, as opposed to other factors.”

As is the case for many of the anti-abortion myths perpetuated within the platform, many of the so-called experts who claim there is a link between abortion and mental illness are discredited anti-choice activists.

Myth #5: Mifepristone, a Drug Used for Medical Abortions, Is “Dangerous”

Both anti-choice activists and conservative Republicans have been vocal opponents of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA’s) March update to the regulations for mifepristone, a drug also known as Mifeprex and RU-486 that is used in medication abortions. However, in this year’s platform, the GOP goes a step further to claim that both the drug and its general approval by the FDA are “dangerous”:

We believe the FDA’s approval of Mifeprex, a dangerous abortifacient formerly known as RU-486, threatens women’s health, as does the agency’s endorsement of over-the-counter sales of powerful contraceptives without a physician’s recommendation. We support cutting federal and state funding for entities that endanger women’s health by performing abortions in a manner inconsistent with federal or state law.

Studies, however, have overwhelmingly found mifepristone to be safe. In fact, the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals says mifepristone “is safer than acetaminophen,” aspirin, and Viagra. When the FDA conducted a 2011 post-market study of those who have used the drug since it was approved by the agency, they found that more than 1.5 million women in the U.S. had used it to end a pregnancy, only 2,200 of whom had experienced an “adverse event” after.

The platform also appears to reference the FDA’s approval of making emergency contraception such as Plan B available over the counter, claiming that it too is a threat to women’s health. However, studies show that emergency contraception is safe and effective at preventing pregnancy. According to the World Health Organization, side effects are “uncommon and generally mild.”

Roundups Politics

Campaign Week in Review: Sanders Vows to Continue the ‘Political Revolution’

Ally Boguhn

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) seemingly signaled he is not yet ready to concede the nomination to Hillary Clinton, and he promised to help push for reforms within the party while working to keep presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump from winning the White House.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) isn’t bowing out of the race for the Democratic nomination after the close of the presidential primaries, and Hillary Clinton took to the Huffington Post to talk about campus sexual assault and whether women should have to sign up for the draft.

“The Political Revolution Must Continue”: Sanders Vows in Thursday Night Address to Push for Party Reform

Sanders addressed supporters Thursday night after the 2016 presidential primary season ended earlier this week. He seemingly signaled he is not yet ready to concede the nomination to Hillary Clinton, and he promised to help push for reforms within the party while working to keep presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump from winning the White House.

“Election days come and go. But political and social revolutions that attempt to transform our society never end. They continue every day, every week, and every month in the fight to create a nation and world of social and economic justice,” Sanders said during the address, which was live-streamed online. “Real change never takes place from the top on down or in the living rooms of wealthy campaign contributors. It always occurs from the bottom on up, when tens of millions of people say loudly and clearly ‘enough is enough’ and they become engaged in the fight for justice. That’s what the political revolution we helped start is all about. That’s why the political revolution must continue.”

“The major political task that we face in the next five months is to make certain that Donald Trump is defeated and defeated badly,” Sanders continued, vowing to soon begin his role in ensuring the Republican doesn’t make it to the White House.

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“But defeating Donald Trump cannot be our only goal,” he added. “We must continue our grassroots efforts to create the America that we know we can become.”

Expressing his hope that he could continue to work with Clinton’s campaign, Sanders promised to ensure that supporters’ “voices are heard and that the Democratic Party passes the most progressive platform in its history and that Democrats actually fight for that agenda.”

That agenda included raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, ending the gender pay gap, defending reproductive rights, and protecting marriage equality in the United States, among other things.

Sanders’ speech came just after campaign manager Jeff Weaver said the campaign is “not currently lobbying superdelegates” and doesn’t “anticipate that will start anytime soon” during an interview on Bloomberg Politics’ With All Due Respect Thursday. The next day, Weaver told the hosts of MSNBC’s Morning Joe that Sanders is still “an active candidate for president.”

Clinton Weighs in on Stanford Sexual Assault Case, Women Joining the Draft

Hillary Clinton took a stand on two notable issues during an interview with the Huffington Post this week, telling the publication that she supported a measure in the Senate to require women to sign up for the draft and her thoughts about the Stanford sexual assault case.

“I do support that,” Clinton told the publication Wednesday when asked about the Senate’s approval of the National Defense Authorization Act, a military policy bill that would require women to sign up for the military draft once they turn 18, earlier in the week.

“I am on record as supporting the all-volunteer military, which I think at this time does serve our country well,” said Clinton. “And I am very committed to supporting and really lifting up the men and women in uniform and their families.”

As the New York Times reported, under the bill, “Failure to register could result in the loss of various forms of federal aid, including Pell grants, a penalty that men already face. Because the policy would not apply to women who turned 18 before 2018, it would not affect current aid arrangements.”

Though the U.S. Supreme Court previously ruled that women weren’t required to register for the draft as they were not allowed to serve in combat, the Times continued, “since Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter said in December that the Pentagon would open all combat jobs to women, military officials have told Congress that women should also sign up for the draft.”

The draft registry has not been used by the United States since 1973, but requiring women to sign up for it has nevertheless been an issue on the campaign trail this election season. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) called requiring women to register for the draft “nuts” in February prior to dropping out of the race for the White House, while other then-Republican presidential candidates Sen. Marco Rubio (FL), New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and former governor of Florida Jeb Bush all signaled they would support it.

During her interview with Huffington Post, Clinton also voiced her support for the survivor at the center of the controversial Stanford sexual assault case, saying she was “was struck by” the “heartbreaking power” of the letter the survivor wrote detailing her experiences.

“It took great courage and I think she has done an important service for others,” Clinton said. “What I’ve heard about this case is deeply concerning. It is clear campus sexual assault continues to be a serious problem. And I’ve said before and I will continue to say it is not enough to condemn it. We must find ways to end it.”

The presumptive Democratic nominee had previously released a platform for addressing the national crisis of campus sexual assault, which promises to “provide comprehensive support to survivors;” “ensure fair process for all in campus disciplinary proceedings and the criminal justice system;” and “increase sexual violence prevention education programs that cover issues like consent and bystander intervention, not only in college, but also in secondary school.”

What Else We’re Reading

Trump’s “endgame” could be launching a “mini-media conglomerate,” Vanity Fair reports.

“He was always very open about describing women by their breast size,” a crew member for Trump’s reality show The Apprentice told Slate of the presumptive Republican nominee. “Any time I see people in the Trump organization say how nice he is, I want to throw up. He’s been a nasty person to women for a long time.”

In the wake of the mass shooting in Orlando at an LGBTQ club, the Southern Poverty Law Center’s deputy legal director of the LGBT Rights Project, David Dinielli, noted that “candidates on the campaign trail-and even the presumptive nominee of the Republican Party-elevate radical anti-LGBT leaders.”

Fact-checkers at the Washington Post took on both Clinton and Trump’s speeches on national security after the massacre in Orlando over the weekend.

“Regardless of your politics, it’s a seminal moment for women,” said Oprah, who offered her endorsement to Clinton on Wednesday, when speaking about the presumptive Democratic nominee. “What this says is, there is no ceiling, that ceiling just went boom! It says anything is possible when you can be leader of the free world.”

CNN’s Jim Sciutto, Tal Yellin, and Ryan Browne offer a look into the implications of Trump’s proposed plan to “suspend immigration from areas of the world when there is a proven history of terrorism against the United States, Europe or our allies.”

Univision penned an open letter on Tuesday expressing their concern over Trump’s decision to revoke press credentials for the Washington Post.

Republicans may have fewer women in the House next year after the election season wraps up.

Texas has already spent $3.5 million fighting multiple lawsuits over the state’s restrictive voter ID law, in what an attorney helping plaintiffs in one of the suits deemed a “shameful waste of taxpayer money.”

Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) moved to make voting in the state easier for some this week, signing legislation that will allow residents with driver’s licenses and state IDs to register to vote online. What’s the catch? According to ThinkProgress, “the option will not be available until early next year, after the presidential election, despite the Republican Secretary of State’s insistence that the Ohio could implement the policy immediately.”