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Unaffiliated candidates fight for ballot access

Right now, it is difficult for candidates unaffiliated with the Democratic or Republican parties to get on the ballot in North Carolina and many other states. Do you think barriers to unaffiliated candidates should be lower? Or are states justified in keeping some candidates off the ballot?http://www.journalpatriot.com/opinion/unaffiliated-candidates-fight-for-ballot-access/article_26eeebe8-1b8b-11e6-aa42-8720cdd16d1c.html

At VMI, Kaine makes renewed push for war powers vote against Islamic State

Sen. Tim Kaine is calling on Congress to authorize military action against the Islamic State, or ISIS. President Obama has already ordered some attacks on ISIS without congressional approval. Do you think Sen. Kaine has the right idea? Or should the U.S. end military action in this area?

http://www.roanoke.com/news/education/higher_education/at-vmi-kaine-makes-renewed-push-for-war-powers-vote/article_c661e7dc-99b9-58eb-8a8e-42b45f5ce281.html

State Fails to Deposit Required Amount in School Pension System

The state of Michigan has accumulated huge unfunded liabilities in the government employee retirement systems it runs due to failing to deposit the required amounts into pension funds. The system for public school employees is the largest and currently has a $26.5 billion unfunded liability. Taxpayers are on the hook for this debt to the tune of more than $2,600 for every man, woman, and child in the state.

So it is significant that for the sixth year in a row state officials once again failed to adequately fund the system. According to an article in Michigan Capitol Confidential, the state’s own actuaries calculated that it should deposit $2.18 billion into the school employee system this year. The deposit covers the additional pension benefits accrued by individual employees for the year, plus some extra to cover catching up on past underfunding.http://www.michigancapitolconfidential.com/22411

However, the state only contributed $1.97 billion, shorting its “Annual Required Contribution” by $210 million.

Legislation has been introduced to contain the growing burden by no longer enrolling new school employees into the defined benefit pension system. Under the bills, new hires would instead get defined contribution, 401(k)-type benefits (see House Bill 5218 and Senate Bill 102).

http://michiganvotes.org/2016-HB-5218

http://michiganvotes.org/2015-SB-102

No More 'Job for Life'

Some faculty at Wisconsin universities are upset that Ray Cross, president of the University of Wisconsin Systems, said that tenure was “not a guarantor of ‘a job for life.’” Do you think that tenure for college professors is necessary? Or should professors be treated more like employees in other professions?

https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2016/05/11/wisconsin-governor-and-university-system-president-anger-professors-comments-tenure

Wisconsin To Drug Test People For Unemployment Benefits

A new Wisconsin law will allow the use of drug testing for unemployment benefits. Drug testing for government programs has been tried in other states with mixed results. Do you think it is a good idea to require drug tests for unemployment insurance or food stamps? Or is this type of program too costly with too few benefits?

http://www.opposingviews.com/i/society/wisconsin-drug-test-people-unemployment-benefits

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