A voter going to the polls in California. Photo: Irfan Khan/Getty Images

The results from June's California primary show that the state had the highest percentage of voter turnout in a primary election since 1998, reports the Associated Press.

The big picture: "California typically ranks in the bottom fourth of states in turnout," per the AP. The numbers from the primary won't change that, but it is a step forward for the state after recent struggles.

By the numbers: Mindy Romero, the director of the California Civic Engagement Project at the University of Southern California, told the AP that high profile contests for governor and U.S. Senate seats contributed to the participation increase.

  • More than 37% of registered voters voted in the primary.
  • That number was just 25% in 2014, per the Public Policy Institute of California.
  • This year's June turnout was closer to both the 2006 and 2010 primaries where turnout was at 33%.

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U.S. policy shift will allow taxpayer funding for projects in West Bank settlements

Friedman (L) with Netanyahu. Photo: Menahem Kahana/AFP via Getty Images

The U.S. and Israel will announce tomorrow that they are expanding three agreements on scientific cooperation to include Israeli settlements in the West Bank, Israeli and U.S. officials tell me.

Why it matters: This is a substantial policy shift for the U.S., which did not previously allow its taxpayers' money to be spent in the Israeli settlements.

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McConnell: Confirming Amy Coney Barrett will help GOP retain Senate

Photo: Samuel Corum/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) expressed no regrets about Judge Amy Coney Barrett's controversial confirmation, telling Politico in an interview that he believes the decision to place her on the Supreme Court just a week before the election will help Republicans retain the Senate.

Why it matters: With a week to go until Election Day, many Republicans are concerned that President Trump's unpopularity could cost them the Senate. McConnell has long viewed the transformation of the federal judiciary through the confirmation of young conservative judges as his defining legacy.

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