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Articles on US Senate

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Battleground: the partisan tenor of Supreme Court reflects more a divisive Senate. Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

Why we have the most polarized Supreme Court in history

You're not imagining it: the Supreme Court has gotten more polarized politically than in years past, thanks to fewer moderates in the Senate.
‘As president, I will repeal every word of Obamacare,’ Ted Cruz proclaimed during the Feburary 25 GOP debate. Mike Stone/Reuters

How difficult would it be to repeal Obamacare for good?

The leading GOP candidates all claim one of their top priorities will be to repeal Obamacare. An architect of the original law outlines the thorny – but plausible – path to repeal.
So far, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has refused to endorse a candidate. REUTERS/Gary Cameron

Elizabeth Warren is savvy not to endorse Clinton or Sanders

Neither Democratic candidate for president has gotten the endorsement of Massachusetts' junior senator. Here's a look at Elizabeth Warren's long game playbook.
Ricky Muir makes up his mind based on how he thinks the proposed policy will affect ordinary Australians like himself. AAP/Lukas Coch

The proposed Senate voting change will hurt Australian democracy

Australia’s political system would be better off with more ordinary people and fewer career party politicians in the Senate. It would thus be more representative of ordinary Australians, not less.
Ricky Muir, who entered the Senate with 0.51% of the vote in Victoria, delivering his maiden speech in March 2015. Lukas Coch/AAP

Changes to Senate voting may be needed but should not be rushed

While the government boasts about engaging the community on the tax issue, it has avoided public debate as it seeks to muster the numbers for voting changes that would have sweeping implications for the…
Obama has some difficult steps to climb to appoint a justice to replace Antonin Scalia. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Four steps to appointing a Supreme Court justice

There are just four steps to appointing a Supreme Court justice -- but that's not to say it's going to be an easy process for Obama.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, accompanied by his wife Lucy, greet people as they walk along Oxford Street. David Moir/AAP

Will Senate voting reform end up in the too-hard basket?

The polling sends a strong message: Malcolm Turnbull starts his prime ministership with people wanting to think the best of him. Essential has found people believe Turnbull is intelligent (81%), hardworking…
‘Not the best person to liaise with us’: senator David Leyonhjelm on new government Senate leader George Brandis. Lukas Coch/AAP

Senate crossbencher’s advice to new PM: come and walk the red carpet, Malcolm

An important element in the success of Malcolm Turnbull’s government will be how effectively it handles the Senate. Some crossbench senators have greeted the arrival of Turnbull enthusiastically, contrasting…
Labor says it will move a motion in the Senate this week for a message to be sent to the Governor-General, requesting he dismiss Dyson Heydon as royal commissioner. AAP/Alan Porritt

Can the Senate force the removal of a royal commissioner?

Given the Governor-General usually acts on the advice of the government and its ministers, an address from the Senate on Dyson Heydon is unlikely to have any effect.

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