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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%.

Go deeper

Vaccinations, relief timing dominate Sweet 16 call

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) speaks during a news conference in December with a group of bipartisan lawmakers. Photo: Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Vaccine distribution, pandemic data and a cross-party comity dominated today's virtual meeting between White House officials and a bipartisan group of 16 senators, Senator Angus King told Axios.

Why it matters: Given Democrats' razor-thin majority in both chambers of Congress, President Biden will have to rely heavily on this group of centrist lawmakers — dubbed the "Sweet 16" — to pass any substantial legislation.

Progressives pressure Schumer to end filibuster

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

A progressive coalition is pressuring Chuck Schumer on his home turf by running a digital billboard in Times Square urging the new majority leader to end the Senate filibuster.

Why it matters: Schumer is up for re-election in 2o22 and could face a challenger, and he's also spearheading his party's broader effort to hold onto its narrow congressional majorities.

4 hours ago - Health

U.S. surpasses 25 million COVID cases

A mass COVID-19 vaccination site at Dodger Stadium on Jan. 22 in Los Angeles, California. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

The U.S has confirmed more than 25 million coronavirus cases, per Johns Hopkins data updated on Sunday.

The big picture: President Biden has said he expects the country's death toll to exceed 500,000 people by next month, as the rate of deaths due to the virus continues to escalate.

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