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FairVote's Year in Reform: Progress on All Fronts

FairVote’s reform ideas had  key victories in 2010,  and, when used, made a real difference. We ask for your support in continuing our work!

We’re pleased to report that: 

  • States enacting the National Popular Vote plan now have 28% of the electoral votes necessary to trigger a national popular vote for president. Expect more wins and new telling FairVote research in 2011.
  • In the past 15 months, voter pre-registration for 16-year-olds passed into law in Delaware and every state where we’ve had staff: Maryland, North Carolina, Rhode Island, Washington, D.C, and California (for 17-year-olds).
  • FairVote oversaw a successful voter education campaign as Port Chester used the proportional voting method of cumulative voting. Voter turnout surged, and winners included two non-major party candidates, and the Board’s first-ever elected African American and Latino members.
  • The instant runoff voting (IRV) form of ranked choice voting had a big year. IRV was used in several cities, including an historic mayoral election in Oakland (CA), and in North Carolina in the nation’s first-ever statewide general election with IRV. Maine's largest city (Portland) adopted IRV, and cities like New York and Los Angeles took major steps toward voting to pass IRV. Columnist Thomas Friedman advocated IRV, as did talk show hosts Bill Maher and Rachel Maddow. The PBS NewHour profiled the impact of IRV in Oakland, while Newsweek, Nation, In These Times, Parade, Governing, Reason and Yes magazines featured IRV. Gov. Howard Dean backed IRV in a national column. FairVote launched OscarVotes123 to explain how the Oscar for best picture is elected by IRV. Great Britain in 2011 will hold a national referendum on adopting it.

See more in Rob Richie's letter to members and in a collection of highlighted quotes from the media. Thanks to all our supporters who make our work possible onto 2011!