Daily Skimm: Freedom is not ‘medom,’ it’s ‘wedom’

Skimm’d while wearing our ‘I Voted’ stickers
November 8, 2022
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Daily Skimm

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Election Day

The Story

Election Day is here. Time to vote.

Give me all the details.

More than 168 million Americans are eligible to vote in an election widely seen as a referendum on the party in power and the issues voters care about. If you haven’t yet, here’s how to check where to vote and what your ballot will look like. Then, it’s vote counting time. Here’s what to keep an eye on:

Senate…aka the chamber that’s split 50-50. Nearly one-third of the seats are up for a vote — and a handful of races could determine control. In Pennsylvania, Dr. Mehmet Oz (R) and Lt. Gov. John Fetterman (D) are neck and neck for a GOP-held Senate seat — with Oz’s former 2020 election claims and Fetterman’s health as two of the big talkers. In Georgia, former NFL star Herschel Walker (R) is trying to unseat Sen. Raphael Warnock (D) — with abortion and allegations of domestic violence taking the spotlight. Other states — like Wisconsin, Nevada, and Arizona — helped President Biden win the 2020 election...but are now considered toss-ups.

House…all 435 seats are up for grabs. Republicans need only five seats to flip the chamber, and they could take more than 20 this round. But even if that's the case, Republicans may still lack enough seats needed to avoid a filibuster in the Senate and override a presidential veto. If Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) becomes speaker, he could reportedly investigate the COVID-19 origin and the Biden admin’s Afghanistan withdrawal. New leadership could also determine the future of the House Jan 6 committee and funding for Ukraine.

State races...where issues like abortion and election oversight are now center stage — and state reps or state secs of state can play key roles. This year, at least five governorships are considered tossups — with New York’s, Arizona’s, and Georgia’s earning special attention. Then there are the ballot initiatives: five states are weighing in directly on recreational marijuana, five on whether to ban or expand abortion access, and five on closing loopholes to block slavery as a form of punishment in prisons. Meanwhile, LGBTQIA+ candidates are reportedly on ballots in all 50 states — after more than 300+ anti-LGBTQIA+ bills have been intro’d this year. And with more than 60 candidates of color running as Republicans, the party could be on its way to changing its demographic in the House GOP.

Other big talkers…like election security. Today marks the first national election since the Jan 6 Capitol attack. Election officials are bracing for potential disruption as they face threats of violence. And some states (think: Arizona, Pennsylvania, and California) have already seen incidents. Cue: early reports of voter intimidation. One poll shows as many as 43% of registered voters are worried about intimidation or violence as they vote. And this year, one report found there are nearly 300 election deniers running for office — with more than a dozen candidates who’ve refused to say if they’ll concede.

theSkimm

Tonight will be long — and some races may take days or more to call (especially if they’re tight). But before all the votes come in, people need to cast them. Make sure your voice is heard.

And Also...This

Who’s got some saying ‘hello pot, this is kettle’...

Elon Musk. Yesterday, Twitter’s new owner encouraged over 100 million of his followers to vote for a “Republican Congress.” While many celebrities stump for Democratic candidates, this update comes months after Musk said the platform “must be politically neutral” to “deserve public trust.” And after GOP-led hearings put heads of Twitter, Facebook, and Google on blast for perceived anti-conservative bias. Now, the “Chief Twit” is urging “independent voters” to vote for Republican candidates while a Democratic president is in office in order for there to be checks and balances. The news came less than 48 hours before polls close.

  • Stop copying me: Musk also said he’s permanently suspending accounts that impersonate others unless they identify themselves as “parody.” The change of heart comes after a wave of celebrities began impersonating Musk last week. And after he called out Twitter over its bans.


What apparently doesn't understand what a group project is…

Switzerland. The country is promising to cut its greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030. But instead of reducing emissions within its own Swiss borders, it will apparently pay poorer countries — like Ghana or Dominica — to do the legwork. That includes by installing efficient lighting and stoves in millions of foreign homes to curb greenhouse gas emissions. And then taking credit for the reductions to count toward its own climate goals. Swiss officials reportedly call it a win-win for everyone involved, while critics argue the idea is “carbon capitalism.” It comes as tensions remain over how wealthy countries — contributing the most to climate change — can make good on their $100 billion pledge to help poorer countries suffering the consequences.

  • Host of issues: Climate activists — including Greta Thunberg — are skipping the summit, saying it’s a forum for “greenwashing.” And Egypt — which is hosting COP27 — is facing criticism for its human rights record and crack down on protests.


What researchers are banking on...

Blood. Yesterday, researchers announced that lab-grown blood has been transfused into people for the first time ever. Scientists in the UK have been able to manufacture blood from donor stem cells. And have infused two people with about two teaspoons of the lab blood to see how it behaves in the body. If the UK trial is a success, scientists say manufactured blood cells could help people with rare blood types or disorders (think: sickle cell anemia) who often need transfusions. There’s also hope that the blood can be stored for longer, compared to standard donor blood. The two people who've been infused haven’t reported any adverse reactions. And at least eight others will also receive transfusions over the next few months. But researchers say more trials are needed before it can be used clinically.


Who’s opening the door to transparency…

Airbnb. Next month, it’s going to try to curb the amount of surprise cleaning and service fees. And no more unreasonable checkout requests, either: like hosts making people strip the beds, do the laundry, and water all their plants before leaving. 


Who’s commenting back…

Selena Gomez.


When you’re reading the Daily Skimm hot off the press…

You may have caught the last total lunar eclipse for three years.


Who went the predictable route… 

The Oscars.

Skimm Your Ballot: Today’s Election Day

Happy Election Day. PSA: Women have voted at higher rates than men in every midterm election since 1998. (Yeah, you read that right.) So for those who’ve already casted their vote (looking at you early voters, absentee ballots, and early birds), congrats. For those who haven’t had the chance to hit the polls yet, there’s still plenty of time.

If you have any last minute Qs, need help figuring out what’s on your ballot, or aren’t sure where your polling place is, check out our election hub, Skimm Your Ballot for tools, resources, and more. Because a lot is on the ballot this year. And the power of this election lies with you.

Need some extra motivation? Watch our conversations with first-time voters Cassidy, a college freshman, and Zainab, a 36-year-old mom, on why they were excited to cast their ballots this year.

Skimm Picks

Here are today’s recs to help you live a smarter life…

1. Crazy-comfy, incredibly stylish sneakers you’ll wanna wear everywhere this winter. These sneaks are making (literal) waves with skaters, surfers, aaaand celebs. They’ve even racked up a 77K waitlist. Psst…they’re never on sale. (Not even on Cyber Monday.) But Skimm’rs get 20% off with code SKIMM20.*

2. Personal training that’ll help you get the most out of staying inside. This brand’s experts will create a custom plan for how you work out. Even if that’s in your living room this winter. Bonus: Skimm’rs pay just $19 for their first month. Warm up.* 

3. A Skimm’r-fave blender that makes more than just smoothies. We’re talking salsas, soups, and…anything else you’ll wanna whip up during cozy szn with this 10-speed Vitamix. The best part? You can save over $100 when you get it from QVC.*

4. A cozy, under-$100 gift anyone on your list will love. These chic, made-to-order blankets come in 50+ designs and 30+ colors. And you can personalize them by adding your giftee’s name, initials, fave phrase…you name it. PS: Skimm’rs get 20% off.*

On Our Radar

Oprah's Favorite Things. Aka lots of great gift ideas for this upcoming holiday season. And if Oprah herself approves, we’re all about it. Shop on.

Skimm'rs

We like to celebrate the wins, big and small. Let us know how your friends, neighbors, coworkers (and yes, even you) are making career moves, checking off goals, or making an impact in the community.

Beauty spot…Veronica T (CA). After being a registered nurse for 15 years she opened her own med spa in 2010. Now she’s setting her eyes on a new goal and is opening a second location in Miami.

(Some) Birthdays…Nino Magliocco (NY), Katie Proffitt (TN), Jeanne Marie Fishkin (NY), Julia Dixon (MI), Isabel Berger (GA), Faith Holmes (TN), Catherine Zaruba (TX), Gabi Messinger (AZ), Stephanie Trautman (MI), Claire Burke (NY), John O'Brien (CT), Brian Murray (NJ), Kelsey McMillen (PA), Olga Sarayeva (MI), Richard Rhorer (NY), Nancy Leeds (DC), Lucia Morris (MA), Kelsey Morem (VA)

PS: Paging all members of theSkimm. Reach out here for a chance to be featured.

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