The Biggest Stories of 2021
The Conflict at the Capitol January 6th was supposed to be an ordinary day. Congress was supposed to verify the results of the 2020 presidential election in a traditional procedure that was only to last an hour or so. Yet very soon into the proceedings, things began to become complicated. Supporters of President Donald Trump's efforts to prevent these proceedings from taking place soon became violent, and thousands infiltrated the Capitol building, armed with weapons, forcing Congress to evacuate. The day made a lasting impact on the rest of the year, and investigations are still ongoing into the "insurrection", what caused it, and what precedent it sets.
The Inauguration of President Joe Biden
In the early hours of January 20th, 2021, the United States had a new President and Vice President. Joe Biden made history as the oldest person to assume the office of President, and Kamala Harris became the first woman (and first person of color) to become Vice President. Their first term will expire on January 20th, 2025, so stay tuned as their administration progresses and we approach the next presidential election.
The Impeachment of President Donald Trump
As a result of the conflict at the Capitol, in early February, former President Donald Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives for inciting insurrection. Trump was later acquitted by the Senate, yet he makes history as the first President to be impeached twice and to be impeached after he left office.
The Withdrawal of Troops in Afghanistan
One of President Biden's first major decisions in office was to remove US troops from Afghanistan, ending our ground involvement in a conflict that has lasted for decades. While this decision was somewhat controversial, as the Taliban reclaimed the nation after our departure, Biden has said it is the first in a line of decisions removing US interference in foreign conflicts.
The Resignation of Governor Andrew Cuomo
Back at home, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was accused of multiple counts of sexual harassment, and as a result, was forced to resign as governor, being succeeded by Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. Later, his brother, journalist Chris Cuomo, was fired by CNN for the same reason. These allegations ended the Cuomo family's hold on power in New York, originating with their father Mario Cuomo's tenure as governor.
The 2020 Census
Meanwhile, the results of the 2020 federal census, which calculated many statistics for the United States population, were revealed. This altered many electoral vote counts for states across the nation and provided key insights into our nation's populace. Check out the results here: https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/decennial-census/decade/2020/2020-census-results.html
The 2021 Elections
In November, Republicans saw massive success in gubernatorial elections, winning the governorship of Virginia and gaining ground in New Jersey. Many analysts have said that these results foreshadow great Republican success in the 2022 midterms, and predict a "red wave" akin to those seen during the Obama administration in 2010 and 2014. Stay tuned for more GOVLEARN content in 2022, where we will cover and craft lessons on the 2022 midterms!