Three Things Thursday includes victory in Virginia for Fair Maps, continuing the Alaska count, and what's next for ranked choice voting.
Surprise, surprise: here we are on Thursday, and across the country, election officials are still counting ballots.
Who could have predicted this? Turns out, the local election officials, who every election, administer the election in accordance with the law. These are the local experts and practitioners who have been advising for months now that it will take time to count every vote.
And indeed, local election officials will continue to count every vote and uphold the integrity of the election process until the voters’ voices are heard. No politician can decide election results; only the voters can do that.
It’s time for all of us to step up, wait patiently, and put country over party.
Here are three takeaways from the election (so far!).
Virginia voters have made their voices loud and clear: voters should choose their politicians, not the other way around. The Commonwealth passed MAJOR redistricting reform on Tuesday by a whopping 65 to 34 margin. A bipartisan citizen-led commission will draw legislative maps in Virginia in 2021, a major victory for voters across the Commonwealth.
FairMaps Virginia and OneVirginia2021 deserve an enormous round of applause for their tireless efforts to bring fair maps to the people. Virginia is spearheading a new path as a bipartisan powerhouse. In fact, ahead of the election, members of the bipartisan Commonwealth Caucus reaffirmed their commitment to bipartisanship and to the people of Virginia, releasing a statement telling Virginians that what matters first and foremost aren’t our allegiances to our parties, but to each other as Virginians and Americans. No matter what happens, we have to respect the outcome of the election.
They even released a video message too! Check it out.
Meanwhile, it’s still too early to call Alaska’s Better Elections initiative; the state’s mail-in ballots won’t even begin being counted until November 10th. So in the meantime, we’re sitting back and waiting patiently for results. We know that the Alasakan election administrators are doing their jobs to ensure that Alaskan voters’ voices are heard, and that their ballots are counted.
We’re standing up for our fellow Americans, and for our election integrity. Results will come, like they always do. And like every election before, we trust the results, and know that that’s our democracy in action. Either way, win or lose, we will accept the results of the election.
Meanwhile, Massachusetts’ Measure 2 fell just short, missing the mark to pass ranked choice voting statewide. A heart-breaking loss, to be sure, but the strides that the campaign made in the state were enormous, and the efforts they made are no less significant. Reform is hard; educating and informing voters is hard; making lasting change is hard.
It wasn’t all bad news for ranked choice voting, though. In every city where RCV was on the ballot — it passed. Bloomington, Minnesota Minnetonka, Minnesota; Albany, California; Eureka, California; and Boulder, Colorado will now all use ranked choice voting at the city level.
Progress is incremental; it happens slowly, then all at once. We’re just in the opening stages of a nationwide groundswell. Don’t be discouraged. We fight on!
Remember, it’s not over till it’s over. We believe in putting country over party — and we know you do too.