“I don’t have to put my child in pageants now.”

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Editors’ note: Mac is spending a month in her home state of Ohio, reporting on the Wisconsin-style showdown involving Republican Governor John Kasich, public employees, unions, teachers, students, and struggling middle-class families.

Meet Erin Rodriguez, the 31-year-old I’ve been living with in Ohio this month. Her husband, a state employee, got laid off the week before last, the source of a lot of worry around the couple’s newly purchased first home, as well as the source of a sad running joke that their 11-month-old is going to have to enter beauty pageants to earn money. Erin got some news yesterday. I’ll just let her tell you.

 


 

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LET’S TALK ABOUT OPTIMISM FOR A CHANGE

Democracy and journalism are in crisis mode—and have been for a while. So how about doing something different?

Mother Jones did. We just merged with the Center for Investigative Reporting, bringing the radio show Reveal, the documentary film team CIR Studios, and Mother Jones together as one bigger, bolder investigative journalism nonprofit.

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It won’t be easy. There are many exciting new things to share with you, but spoiler: Wiggle room in our budget is not among them. We can’t afford missing these goals. We need this to be a big one. Falling flat would be utterly devastating right now.

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