Sign the petition: Pass sweeping democracy reforms

Democrats must lead in fixing our broken democracy.

Tell House Democratic leaders:
H.R. 1 must be a bold, comprehensive package of democracy reforms including: independent redistricting commissions, citizen-funded elections and protection against voter discrimination.

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Dear 5849376,

Democrats must lead in fixing our broken democracy.

From massive voter suppression to the corruptive influence of money in politics, the last couple of elections have proven that our democracy is broken and must be fixed.

The first order of business for the new Democratic majority in the House will be sweeping reforms to fix our democracy, but we must ensure that these efforts are not watered down or too narrow.1 That's why CREDO is joining with groups like the Brennan Center for Justice and Common Cause to make sure Democratic leaders know – before they even take power – that this new package must put voting rights and voter protection front and center.

Tell House leaders: Make sure H.R. 1 is a bold package to fix our broken system. Click here to sign the petition.

With massive numbers of voters reportedly purged from the rolls in key states like Georgia, numerous problems with voter registration even before Election Day and state policies that limit early or absentee voting, it is likely that hundreds of thousands of voters were prevented from casting their ballots last month. Additional hurdles like voter ID requirements kept many from even trying to vote. Confusion about voter status and provisional ballots contributed to already long lines – in some places the result of polling place closures in predominantly non-white communities.2

Any fix that Congress proposes must include an ironclad commitment to restoring the Voting Rights Act (VRA). In 2013, the Supreme Court gutted the VRA and as a result states immediately moved to put voter restrictions in place.3 So many of the state-level efforts to disenfranchise voters of color, in particular, would not be permitted with a robust VRA in place.

Beyond voter protection, Congress must also look to expand voter access: making early voting easy and widespread, enacting automatic voter registration so that everyone who is eligible to vote is registered unless they opt out, and restoring voting rights to people barred for prior criminal convictions.

And of course we need fair, independently-drawn districts. Voter participation was 10 percentage points higher in 2018 than it was in 2014, but Republican-rigged districts kept the blue wave from becoming a tsunami. Democracy only works if peoples' votes count equally – no matter their ZIP code.

Tell House leaders: Make sure H.R. 1 is a bold package to fix our broken system. Click here to sign the petition.

Voter protection and expansion are essential to a functioning democracy, but we must also limit the power of corporations. Small-donor public financing would mitigate the damage caused by Citizens United, making it easier for people who are not beholden to corporate or big-donor interests to run for office and be competitive.

Both the 2016 and 2018 elections were unduly influenced by not just big money corporate interests but also by foreign powers. We need strong disclosure rules so that we can find out who is trying to sway our votes.

The newly elected Democratic majority in the House knows that the public wants strong solutions to fix our democracy, and they are planning on taking important steps in the right direction. But before there are the inevitable attempts to compromise or moderate the proposals they include in H.R. 1, they need to hear loud and clear that any package that does not restore the VRA, expand voter access with Automatic Voter Registration and require concrete steps to get money out of politics won't go far enough.

Tell House leaders: Make sure H.R. 1 is a bold package to fix our broken system. Click the link below to sign the petition.

Thank you for standing up for democracy,

Kaili Lambe, Organizing Director
CREDO Action from Working Assets

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  1. Ella Nilsen, "House Democrats unveil their first bill in the majority: a sweeping anti-corruption proposal," Vox, Nov. 30, 2018.
  2. Danielle Root and Aadam Barclay, "Voter Suppression During the 2018 Midterm Elections," Center For American Progress, Nov. 20, 2018.
  3. Brennan Center for Justice, "Restore the Voting Rights Act," Feb. 4, 2016.

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