As the school year comes to a close, children are looking forward to getting out of the classroom and into camps, vacations, and summer activities. Parents are reflecting on the past year and preparing for the one ahead — especially in light of the problems that the pandemic exposed in schooling.
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The past year—full of challenges, division, and isolation—exposed many of the fault lines in our society. Events across the country brought renewed attention to enduring racial divisions, and highlighted a number of challenges related to law enforcement and policing. But if there is one issue that ought to help provide healing and unity for our communities, it is commonsense criminal justice reform.
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Of all the things shared by the United States and Britain, perhaps the most important is the common law—a system of law that isn’t imposed from above but arises from the people in the form of cases and precedents. Engrained in common law is the concept of “partnership.” Partnerships allow individuals to cooperate by sharing knowledge and resources for mutual benefit. They are also voluntary, allowing each member to freely associate, and require each to value the welfare of his counterpart as much as his own.
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The Supreme Court is the highest tribunal in the United States for all cases and controversies arising under the Constitution. But not all legal issues reach the court, and even if they do, it takes years for them to do so. That is why we, as U.S. senators ourselves, take an oath to uphold the Constitution.
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Earlier this week, Democratic Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema publicly declared their support for the Senate’s cloture rule, which requires a supermajority of 60 votes to end floor debates and pass most legislation. Their statements effectively ended the Senate’s latest flirtation with the so-called “nuclear option” -- the parliamentary gambit by which many Democrats want to eliminate the 60-vote threshold with only their 50 votes.
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Over 400,000 U.S. children were in the foster care system in 2019, and the number of children and youth in foster care is higher today than it has been in nearly a decade. Tragically, some government leaders and researchers fear that the current pandemic could lead to heightened child abuse and increase the number of children in need of foster care. This increased demand may introduce additional stress into a system already in need of reform.
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Today I am introducing the One Agency Act—a bill to put all federal antitrust enforcement under one roof. For over a century, enforcement of the antitrust laws has been divided between the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission – more than enough time to see that this arrangement does not work.
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During the recent vice presidential debate, I pointed out on Twitter that our form of government in the United States is not a democracy, but a republic. The confused and vehement media criticism that ensued persuaded me that this point might be better served in an essay rather than a 140-character Tweet.

Insofar as “democracy” means “a political system in which government derives its powers from the consent of the governed,” then of course that accurately describes our system. But the word conjures far more than that. It is often used to describe rule by majority, the view that it is the prerogative of government to reflexively carry out the will of the majority of its citizens.
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Never before has a vice presidential debate been so important.

If elected, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden would be the oldest person ever elected to a first term as president. And his running mate Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., already seems to be measuring the drapes. Just last month she referred to “a Harris administration” before correcting herself by adding “Biden-Harris administration.”
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