Posts by miagarchitorena

By Lena Masri and Mia Garchitorena

Ted Cruz, the first Hispanic to serve as U.S. Senator from Texas, announced in March that he is running for president.

He will be participating in an election that is likely to be very expensive. Much more money can now be spent on The Presidential Election Campaign of 2016 becauseThe Supreme Court has lifted restrictions on election spending, allowing an unlimited amount of financial contributions to pour into politics.

And Cruz is in the running for most accounted contributions from private employers thus far. Just in his first week as presidential candidate, he raised $2 million, doubling his initial goal of $1 million for the time period.

Most of his largest contributions come from retirees and self-employers, according to data from The Federal Election Commission, an independent regulatory agency that discloses campaign financial information.

Other candidates like Hillary Clinton have only recently started their fundraising campaign.

By: Lena Masri and Mia Garchitorena

Money is likely to play a big role in the 2016 presidential election.

This month The Supreme Court lifted restrictions on election spending, removing a decades-old cap on the total amount any individual can contribute to federal candidates in a two-year election cycle.

In 2012, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, who were the two major party candidates for president spent close to $1.12 billion — not counting the millions more spent by the parties and outside groups, according to Overall, the presidential race cost more than $2.6 billion in that cycle. But next year’s election is expected to be even more expensive. Hillary Clinton, the U.S.’s first female presidential candidate, raised over $9 million in contributor funds in 2014 and has set a $2.5 billion fundraising goal for 2016. 

So who are the donors so far?

We want to create a chart that shows all the 62 groups that are so far known to be associated with potential 2016 presidential candidates.

Here is a link to the data:

We would also like to make charts that show how much money was spent back in 2012 just to give an idea of how much money can be spent on the 2016 election now that even more money has been allowed to pour into politics. Here is a link to the data:

Potential sources:

Lawrence Lessig, the Roy L. Furman Professor of Law and Leadership at Harvard Law School, and director of the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics at Harvard University.

Dr. Timothy Lukes, Professor of Political Science at Santa Clara University

Deborah Hellman, Professor of Law, University of Virginia

Dr. Thomas R Marshall, Professor at Political Science, University of Texas Arlington

Chris Arterton 
Professor of Political Management
Founding Dean of the Graduate School of Political Management, George Washington University

MEDIA CONTACTS: George Washington University

John Brandt
Jill Sankey

According to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention, 37% of New Yorkers between the ages of 18-64 years old are handicapped.

Wheelchair accessibility in New York subway stations are not completely scarce. There are 38 subway stations in Manhattan that are accessible to handicapped people and most of them are in major locations of high-ridership.

Stations outside of Midtown, such as the 168th Street and 181st Street locations in Washington Heights, are only accessible by stairway.

Parks, train stations and playgrounds are some of the most common places outside of subway stations that have publicly handicap accessible bathrooms.

You can usually always count on a Dunkin’ Donuts, a Duane Reade, or a Starbucks to be on every corner in New York City. Public restrooms, especially handicap accessible restrooms, are not as readily available.

New York City is known for its resource availability around every corner. Restaurants, bodegas, and entertainment venues are usually within walking distance, especially in Manhattan. But at one time or another, New Yorkers and tourists alike have most likely wondered where they can access a public restroom without passing a “bathroom for customers only” sign. This problem is even more difficult for people that are handicapped. mapped every public restroom in New York City and has included those that are handicap accessible. I will map these restroom locations and combine it with other handicap resources, such as elevators and subway stations, from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority Guide to Accessible Transit in order to provide a better visual of New York as a handicap accessible city.


Commission on Quality of Care and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities
(800) 522-4369

A Look at the Undocumented Population in the Boroughs

Undocumented immigrants in New York can now identify themselves thanks to the idNYC initiative. The card, a free I.D. that began this past January, is a municipal I.D. that works the same way a state I.D. does. However, the card doesn’t require as much paperwork as a state I.D. For those who were unable to receive a state I.D., such as undocumented immigrants, this card is  beneficial. Using the card can allow access to government buildings and provides an official identification if approached by police.

Over 65 percent of undocumented immigrants have moved to the New York City from all over the world since 2000. The Center of Migration Studies cites when these undocumented immigrants moved to the United States and what countries they moved from. This map categorizes undocumented immigrants by borough, population and race. Further studies on particular races will provide the reasons for their migration to New York.

Currently thousands of undocumented immigrants remain unknown in New York City, a problem Mayor de Blasio’s office sought to change with the idNYC initiative. The idNYC card was developed with the immigrant community in mind. Both immigrants and citizens lined up at idNYC offices, waiting three hours or more for an appointment. Over 44,000 applications were processed during its introduction and as of Feb. 27, over 260,000 appointments at enrollment centers were booked, according to a mayoral administrative assistant.

   “This is a first step toward including undocumented people in society. Hopefully the entire state will except this card soon,” said Melissa Garcia, a member of the immigration information center New York State Youth Leadership Council.

The number of undocumented immigrants in New York has risen tremendously since 2000, according to the Center of Migration Studies. About 27% of unauthorized immigrants, documented by the 2012 census, came to the U.S. during the years 2000-2004. Out of 25 countries, the Dominican Republic has seen the most immigration with 11% of its population moving to the United States.

A Columbia University socioeconomic profile study on Dominicans shows that New York City has the highest concentration of Dominicans in the U.S., with over 300,000 Dominicans moving between 1990 to 2000. Dominicans now outnumber Puerto Ricans, according to the Center for Latin American, Caribbean & Latino Studies (CLCL), with over 140,000 Dominicans moving to NYC between 2010 to 2013. One reason for this surge in population is that Dominicans seemed to leave the country while Haitians moved in.

The Center of Migration also shows that there is a minute amount of undocumented immigrants from Africa. In 2012, over 5,000 undocumented Ghanians and 2,000 undocumented Nigerians moved to New York City. Less than 1,000 moved from Ethiopia. The United States Census Bureau states that the African population in the United States has doubled every decade since 1970. The number of African immigrants in New York continues to increase, but most seem to move here legally.

Proving residency and identity is difficult for some undocumented immigrants. Most undocumented immigrants in New York live anonymously in fear of being detected or deported by officials. idNYC particularly aims at helping immigrants to not be afraid of reaching out for assistance from government agencies.

“Generally, this should be seen as a platform for undocumented immigrants to come out of the closet and be transparent about their status,” said Wernick. “The more people come out of the shadows, the more likely we are to see real immigration reform.”

More countries are urbanizing as we progress through the 21st century. Since 1950, urbanization has increased globally. Certain countries now, like Saudia Arabia, have become exclusively urban when they were once largely rural countries. Researchers and data journalists at KILN, a London-based data visualization organization, have created an interactive presentation on urbanization. They found that average income, fertility rates, childhood malnutrition, and illiteracy affect a country’s rate of urbanized growth. They have also found that most countries around the world have turned to urbanization and to this day, are still migrating towards the urban life.

KILN’s interactive presentation succeeds in presenting a large amount of information through simple and visuals mediums. The amount of reporting behind the project is evident, and facts are stated in a chronological manner. Readers will clearly see that most countries have increased in urbanization from 1950 to 2015 through color-coded line graphs.

The presentation’s narration also aids the progression of the information, allowing readers to sit back and view the presentation before setting out to explore the project themselves.

Organization is a problem that I found with the project. Navigating through the graphs is slightly confusing because readers have the option to view countries by average income, continent, country, and change since 1950. Graphs will sort themselves according to which buttons are pressed, but the color-coded distinction between countries becomes overwhelming when the graphs are stacked on top of each other. All countries in Africa, for example, are colored blue. Once these graphs are combined, the user has no way of deciphering which country is which if they don’t hover their mouse above each individual line that reveals the country’s name.

Not all countries are shown in each section and it’s not explained why certain countries were included while others were not. There are no source citations throughout the presentation. Rural areas seem to have the higher fertility rates in all countries. The dates of the data sets for the fertility rates vary from 1998 to 2012. This is not updated information.

The presentation succeeds in capturing visual attention, but the speediness in which the project is presented restricts viewers from properly understanding the information and the accompanying narration. KILN seems to be an innovative organization unlike any other, but the flaws for this particular presentation are evident.