Things That Matter

Primary Elections Are Happening All Over The Country Right Now. Here’s What You Should Know About These Elections

Since President Trump won the 2016 elections, there has been a surge in Democratic people of color and women entering politics and running for office around the country for the first time. All of the candidates have focused on one thing: getting people to vote. With the primary season underway, people are putting their names and careers on the line to fight for a better future for all Americans from women’s rights to immigration rights.

While there’s a record amount of women running for office this year, there’s also an increase in Latinos running for a government seat.

Some primary elections have already taken place, and Latinos have won their respective seats (see winners below), which means there’s a great wave of change coming to Washington. However, there’s still plenty of primary elections that have yet to take place. Here’s a list of the Latinos that running this year and hope to represent all Americans.

Winner: Democrat Lupe Valdez, running for Governor of Texas.

Watch Live as Lupe Valdez accepts the Democratic Nomination!

Posted by Lupe Valdez on Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Valdez has a long career in law enforcement that started with being a federal agent and led to her being the first Latina sheriff in the U.S. She served as sheriff for Dallas County for four terms before she decided to run for governor of Texas in the hopes of being the first lesbian Latina to hold the office.

Democrat Randy Bryce, running for Congress in Wisconsin. Primary Election date: Aug. 14.

Randy Bryce is of Mexican and Polish descent and a  U.S. Army veteran, cancer survivor, and union ironworker. This is Bryce’s first attempt at a politician. He is running for Wisconsin’s 1st Congressional District currently held by Speaker Paul Ryan.

In an interview with mitu, Chief Operating Officer Jessica Reeves at Voto Latino says Latinos are getting into politics because there’s a lack of representation.

“I think people are realizing that in order to have our issues heard, we as Latinos need to make sure we’re represented not only at the polls but in elected office,” Reeves said. “A number of programs like Run for Something and our own Power Summit leadership program are training and encouraging people from all walks of life to step up and start a life of public service.”

Democrat Nelson Araujo, running for Nevada Secretary of State; Primary Election Date: June 12.

These two. ❤️

A post shared by Nelson Araujo (@nelsonaraujonv) on

Nelson Araujo is the son of parents who were refugees from the Salvadoran Civil War. He was raised by his mother, who worked as a housekeeper in a hotel.

Winner: Democrat Texas Congresswoman Veronica Escobar.

Veronica Escobar is a third-generation El Pasoan. She has served as County Judge and County Commissioner for El Paso, Texas before running for Texas’s 16th Congressional District.

Winner: Democrat Texas Senator Sylvia Garcia.

Sylvia Garcia won her race with 63 percent of the vote and would join Escobar by becoming one of the first two Latinas to Congress if they win the midterm elections. Garcia is running to represent Texas’s 29th Congressional District.

Winner: Democratic  Chicago Congressman Jésus “Chuy” García.

Posted by Jesus "Chuy" Garcia on Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Jesus “Chuy” García was born in Durango, Mexico, and has severed as representative on the Cook County Board of Commissioners in Illinois. His father was a farm laborer under the U.S government’s World War II-era bracero program. Garcia is running for Rep. Luis Gutiérrez’s seat representing Illinois’s 4th Congressional District.

Democrat Juana Matias running for Congress in Massachusetts. Primary election date: Sept. 4.

According to Ballot Pedia, Juana Matias was first elected to the Massachusetts chamber in 2016. She says she’s a “product of the American Dream,” and was a raised by a blue-collar family. She is running or Massachusetts’s 3rd Congressional District.

Democrat Michelle Lujan Grisham running for Governor of New Mexico. Primary election date: June 5.

Michelle Lujan was born in Los Alamos, New Mexico, and grew up in Santa Fe, and serves New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District on the House Agriculture and Budget Committees. She is currently the Chair for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

Democrat David Garcia running for Governor of Arizona. Primary election date: Aug. 28.

David Garcia is fourth generation Arizonan “and an infantry marksman who was raised to value service and integrity, Democrat,” according to his website.

Winner: Democrat Alma Anaya Cook County Commissioner in Chicago.

Alma Anaya, born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, and a graduate from Gwendolyn Brooks College Prep. She earned a bachelor’s degree in communication from the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Winner: Democrat Rep. Aaron Ortiz for Illinois.

"The Progressive Change Campaign Committee (BoldProgressives.org) is a million-member grassroots organization building…

Posted by Aaron Ortiz for State Rep on Sunday, March 11, 2018

Aaron “Chuy” Garcia is a son of immigrants from Durango, Mexico. The young politician and educator is running to be the state representative of Illinois’s 1st district.

Democrat Debbie Mucarsel-Powell running for Congress in Florida. Primary election date: Aug. 28.

Debbie Mucarsel-Powell is a first-generation American who has built a career working for numerous non-profits around south Florida. Mucarsel-Powell is running to unseat Republican incumbent Rep. Carlos Curbelo.

Democrat Virginia Madueño running for Congress in California. Primary election date: June 5.

Posted by Virginia Madueño for Congress District 10 on Thursday, April 26, 2018

Virginia Madueño is a local business owner and served as mayor of Riverbank. She running to represent the voices of California’s 10th Congressional District.

Democrat Antoinette Sedillo-Lopez running for Congress in New Mexico. Primary election date: June 5.

According to Ballot Pedia, Antoinette Sedillo-Lopez “graduated from the University of New Mexico and the UCLA School of Law. She taught law at the UNM for 27 years and remains an emeritus law professor. She serves as the executive director of Enlace, an anti-domestic violence nonprofit conducting outreach to Latino immigrant communities.” She is running for New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District.

Democrat Xochitl Torres Small running for Congress in New Mexico. Primary election date: June 5.

Posted by Xochitl for Congress on Thursday, January 11, 2018

“As a child, Xochitl heard stories about her grandmother, who immigrated here from Mexico, working in the fields to build her American dream,” her website states. “Xochitl watched her mom, who goes to school early and stays long after the last bell has rung to help her students succeed. Xochitl saw her father consistently go the extra mile as a social worker to help those who are too often pushed aside.  She learned the importance of having your neighbor’s back – something Congress doesn’t seem to care about anymore.”

Democrat January Contreras running for Attorney General in Arizona. Primary election date: Aug. 28.

ENDORSEMENT: As a K-12 product of Arizona's public schools, I am honored to be endorsed by the Arizona Education…

Posted by January Contreras on Friday, May 11, 2018

“As a Deputy County Attorney, Assistant Attorney General, founder of a not-for-profit and, most importantly, as a mother to two children, January has always been driven to protect others,” her website states.

Democrat Gil Cisneros running for Congress in California. Primary election date: June 5.

Ready for the game. @fullertonhoops #TuskUp #MarchMadness🏀 #CA39

A post shared by Gil Cisneros for Congress (@gilcisnerosca) on

Gil Cisneros is the first in his family to graduate from college, and is the son of a public school cafeteria worker and a Vietnam veteran. He attended college on a Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (R.O.T.C.) scholarship, and graduated with a B.A. in Political Science from The George Washington University. He is running to represent California’s 39th Congressional District.

While it’s an incredible accomplishment to have so many Latino running for office, Reeves says Latino voters shouldn’t feel obligated to vote for Latinos, simply because they’re Latino.

“At the end of the day the most important thing for a Latino voter is to elect someone that will represent their issues and values, not their ethnicity,” Reeves said.

For a full list of primary elections, visit the National Conference of State Legislatures.


READ: From New York To San Diego, These Candidates Are Standing Up For Their Latino Communities

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Birth Control May Not Make You Gain Weight, But It Does Change Your Body Shape

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Birth Control May Not Make You Gain Weight, But It Does Change Your Body Shape

@tanzacochran / Twitter

Like anatomy in general, birth control can be intimidating, confusing, and even a little scary. But it doesn’t have to be! While there are endless ideas about how birth control affects the body (it gives you acne, it makes you gain weight, it changes your moods, lo que sea), the truth is that everyone’s experience is different. For some, all of these claims might be true—and for others, none of them may be. Yet although each form of birth control impacts individuals in unique ways, there are definitely certain trends to watch out for. So if you’re curious about how birth control might affect your body, get ready for some seriously helpful—and possibly surprising!—information.

For years, many healthcare providers and users of birth control have believed that hormonal methods can lead to excessive weight gain. While bodies fluctuate and weight gain happens naturally for lots of different reasons, people often avoid this type of contraception—which includes the patch, the pill, monthly shots, and some IUDs—in order to avoid that alleged extra poundage.

However, many decades of research seem to dispel the myth that hormonal birth control leads to weight gain.

https://media.giphy.com/media/26BRQFh7Lc6ZpMKOY/giphy.gif

A 2014 review of 49 trials comparing 52 different birth control methods led to the conclusion that neither pill nor patch caused significant weight gain. Although “the evidence was not strong enough to be sure that these methods did not cause some weight change,” the reviewers found “no major effect on weight.”

Some studies focused on the combined pill (a version of the pill that contains many different—and often synthetic—hormones), while others investigated pills containing real progesterone, a hormone that our bodies naturally produce. The result was clear: no matter the contents, neither type of pill has a side effect of weight gain. Why, then, do we associate a higher number on the scale with the use of contraception?

According to Maria Gallo, an endocrinologist at Ohio State University who co-authored the review, the notion of weight gain as a symptom of birth control is rooted in a natural human bias.

Credit: Womenshealth.gov

Gallo suggests that when people are influenced by certain ideas or patterns (for example, if a small number of people report gaining weight after starting a new medication), those ideas seem to manifest in real life—even if the data doesn’t support those observations.

“It’s the same reason why there’s this idea that vaccines can cause health problems,” says Gallo. “If you give them to a population, you’re going to have some people who have health problems, whether they’re linked to the vaccine or not.”

In regard to the connection between weight and the pill, Gallo acknowledges that adults of both sexes gain roughly a pound each year, beginning in our early twenties. She points out that this is also the age when people start using contraception. Yet while Gallo asserts that the pill-weight connection is ultimately a myth—and that weight gain is likely attributed to different external factors—she confirms that the pill definitely does change the body in other ways.

Reviews indicate that birth control can change a body’s shape and composition, affecting muscle growth, fluid retention, and overall fat distribution.

Credit: Pinterest

A 2009 study showed that women taking a pill with a certain type of synthetic progesterone were unable to achieve their desired muscle gains. The fake progesterone, it turns out, was competing with a natural hormone called DHEA, which helps promote muscle growth. The impact of the synthetic progesterone kept women from meeting their desired fitness goals, because without a certain amount of DHEA, their bodies were incapable of supporting new muscle development.

On top of that, another study found that different hormones have different effects on fat cells. Estrogen and progesterone are responsible for feminine features, like wide hips, breasts, and booty. The fat that lives on these parts of the body is called subcutaneous fat, and it contains a large number of estrogen receptors. So, the study demonstrated that pills with higher estrogen levels often resulted in more subcutaneous fat and, therefore, a more “pear-shaped” silhouette.

And finally, the puffy feeling we all know too well—bloating—may also be a symptom of the pill. While we might feel bloated after un par de tacos or a big bucket of movie popcorn, that sensation is different than bloating caused by hormones. Estrogen impacts the way our bodies metabolize water, so high-estrogen birth control methods can make the body retain more fluid. Sometimes, this fluid seeps into fat cells, causing them to swell and create the illusion of weight gain. This means that while we may not actually be gaining weight, our clothes might fit differently, and we may feel sort of uncomfortable.

All in all, birth control can absolutely impact the way your body functions—it’s designed to do that! The trick is understanding your own body and finding a method that works for you and keeps you feeling healthy.

Kellyanne Conway Is Convinced That Americans Think the Impeachment Process is a Sham

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Kellyanne Conway Is Convinced That Americans Think the Impeachment Process is a Sham

@newsmax / Twitter

Kellyanne Conway is as famous for being a counselor to the president as she is for her bizarre word-gymnastics. Who could forget her infamous coining of the term “alternative facts” when arguing about the size of Trump’s inauguration crowd in 2017. One thing Conway is not well-known for, however, are her jokes.

On Monday, Conway made an appearance on the popular cable news morning show Fox & Friends to discuss the impeachment hearings that President Trump is embroiled in. Conway, being who she is, arrived on the program with a veritable vault of sound bites ready to be dispensed at the right opportunity. One of these unfortunate soundbites was a hybrid Christmas/impeachment joke that was lame enough to make the dorkiest of dads cringe.

“For all the incredible buying power in this Trump economy, you know what Americans are not buying this holiday season? Impeachment,” she quipped. 

The joke was in response to a question a Fox & Friends co-host posed about whether it was a “tough decision” for Trump’s lawyers to refuse to participate in the impeachment hearings. After insisting that it was “not a tough decision”, Conway launched into a lengthy diatribe, denouncing Trump’s impeachment as “an unconstitutional, illegitimate engagement”. 

Usually a receptive audience, even the Fox & Friends anchors didn’t seem to be impressed with her attempt at word-play. But Conway didn’t stop there. She continued her amateur stand-up routine by likening the House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler to Inspector Clouseau (the star of “The Pink Panther” franchise).

“If [Nadler] knew what the charges were…we would already know what were in the articles of impeachment,” she told the morning show. “Why is he playing a game of Inspector Clouseau secret squirrel?” 

And as if that weren’t enough, Conway continued her tirade against the House Judiciary committee, virtually filibustering on the illegitimacy of the impeachment. Conway claimed that Democrats were making Trump “a victim to lots of Americans” who just want to “get on with the business of the country”. Conway posited that if Democrats were so convinced of Trump’s guilt, then “why in the world do [they] spend fifteen hours on Saturday and Sunday trying to figure out what the strategy is for today?”.

Conway, never one to back down from some screen-time, continued on her tirade even when a co-host tried to cut off her rambling speech. “Were [the Democrats] at soup kitchens?” she asked, becoming visibly more unhinged as she continued to speak. “Were they at districts putting wreaths on veteran’s graves? Were they there telling seniors how they’re going to lower their prescriptions drugs? Were they there covering the pot holes? Getting the 5G broadband to kids who don’t have it in rural America? No! They were huddled here in the nation’s capital on your dime wasting your time on more impeachment…”

For all the jokes Conway made at the expense of Democrats, if there’s one person who’s not laughing this week, it’s President Trump.

According to Trump’s lawyers, they are refusing to participate in the impeachment proceedings due to the lack of “any semblance of a fair process” by the House Judiciary Committee. As a refresher, The House Judiciary Committee  decided to move forward with impeaching President Trump after releasing a 300-page report detailing the relationship between Trump and Ukraine. This makes Trump the third president in the history of the United States to be impeached.

As for what many people on Twitter weren’t “buying”, it was Conway’s misrepresentation of the facts.

Conway always has  a way of spinning reality, but nonetheless, it’s still irksome to hear her spouting “alternative facts” on national television.

This person didn’t seem to agree on Conway’s assertion that Americans don’t agree with Trump’s impeachment:

Her claim that Democrats are making Trump a “victim” in the eyes of the American people is dubious, at best. 

This person took issue with Conway calling the impeachment “illegitimate”.

 https://twitter.com/Slartyb63689892/status/1204281120679854081?s=20

It’s not easy to impeach a president. Considering the many scandals that Trump has been involved with since taking office (and before as well), many people would consider the impeachment is a long-time-coming.

This person was skeptical of Conway’s polling data, when there is public evidence suggesting the contrary. 

According to aggregate polling site fivethirtyeight.com, 47.4% Americans support Trump’s impeachment while 45.6% oppose it.

This person coined a new term:

Although we’ve never heard the phrase “Impeachmas” before, we agree that it has quite a nice ring to it.