The last Three Things Thursday before election day, and we need you to vote yes on 1 to end gerrymandering in Virginia, yes on 2 to establish ranked choice voting in Massachusetts, and yes on 2 to establish nonpartisan primaries and ranked choice voting in Alaska.
Here are three things we're thinking about as we head towards election day [spoiler alert: it's the three reform campaigns we're supporting]:
Honestly, I think the entire Unite America team is a bit jealous of Alaska voters this election season. [It’s a sad indictment of how nerdy the UA team is that that statement is absolutely true]. Measure 2 on Alaska’s ballot combines two of our favorite reforms, nonpartisan primaries and ranked choice voting, to empower Alaska voters, not the political parties.
Elections should be about voters, not about party bosses or special interests. Ballot Measure 2 in Alaska helps to ensure that voters come first by empowering all Alaskans to participate in the electoral process, by creating a single, unified primary open to all voters, and establishing ranked choice voting in nonpartisan elections. It also requires dark money groups to disclose their donors, establishing one of the strictest transparency laws in the country.
The Yes on 2 campaign is close! In a state where independent voters make up 58% of the population, the parties are putting up a fight! Read more about why Alaskans should vote yes on 2 and support the campaign here.
On the opposite side of the country, ranked choice voting is on the ballot again. The Bay State can become the second (or third, fingers crossed Alaska!) state to use ranked choice voting statewide. Question 2 on the Massachusetts ballot would establish ranked choice voting for all statewide offices, state legislative offices, and federal congressional offices starting in 2022.
Ranked choice voting is simple, straightforward, and it empowers voters to ensure that their voices are heard by allowing them to express a range of opinions. Ranked choice voting also helps to improve representation of minority groups, and ensures that the winner of an election actually has a majority of support.
Amendment 1 has been a long time coming: after years of partisan gerrymandering, lawmakers last year struck a bipartisan deal that would establish a redistricting commission to draw the maps. Instead of self-interested politicians, citizens would lead the way, drawing the district maps for the state. After passing the legislature a second time, the amendment now has to be approved by the citizens.
Politicians shouldn’t be in the position of choosing their voters, and Amendment 1 ensures that they won’t be. Instead, a commission led by citizens and held accountable to the public will be in charge, drawing maps that are fair for all Virginians, not just a select few.