Press

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  • What If They Had a Runoff and Nobody Came?

    On June 24th election workers had a lonely experience in polling places in North Carolina such a precinct in New Hanover that recorded one vote. After unusually high voter turnout in the May 6 primary timed with the presidential primary, last Tuesday’s runoff elections beat the record of the lowest turnout ever in North Carolina. Turnout for the runoff for the Democratic State Labor Commissioner nomination was less than 2%, dropping to 0.8% in Mecklenburg where the election cost more than $120 per voter. Statewide the Labor Commissioner runoff cost between 3.5 million and 5 million dollars to counties. 

  • Why Two Elections When One Can Do?

    • Posted: June 25, 2008
    • Categories: FairVote

    South Carolina voters – or at least handfuls of them – went to the polls on June 24th for runoff elections in 11 state legislative elections two weeks after the June 10th initial round. In the district number 4 democratic runoff for State House of Representatives, Paul Corden won a majority with fewer than 7,800 votes after falling short of a majority in early June with 14,968 votes. Overall, turnout declined by more than 48% in his runoff, and declined by at least 20% in nine other runoffs for state office held by Republicans and Democrats. South Carolina taxpayers likely spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on these runoffs; North Carolina’s statewide runoff the same day (one drawing turnout of less than 2% of registered voters) cost $5 million.

  • Deconstructing the Media's Clinton-Obama Ouija Board

    • Posted: May 14, 2008
    • Categories: FairVote

  • Why Three Elections When One Could Do?

    Louisiana held three runoff elections on April 5th to determine nominees for the May 3rd special election to fill the state’s two vacant congressional seats. Turnout declined by 17% from the first round, including 27% in the Democratic runoff in District 6. Louisiana taxpayers spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on these runoffs. On April 7th in California, voters filled a U.S. House vacancy in a single election – something Louisiana used to be able to do before its 2007 law establishing a primary-runoff-general election system that can mean three elections to elect candidates for the U.S. House and U.S. Senate.

  • Delegating Democracy

    • Posted: April 3, 2008
    • Categories: FairVote

    Political parties have broad authority over how they conduct their nomination procedures, including in primary elections administered by the state. Parties are private associations with protections under the first amendment that enable them to go beyond state and federal laws in expanding suffrage, increasing participation and allowing for more democratic contests. With this flexibility and freedom, parties have great opportunities to review and improve their election systems by incorporating reforms that give more voters an equal voice and an equal vote. From representative delegate allocation regimes to ranked choice voting and expanded suffrage rights, a political party's nomination process can be a true laboratory of democracy. We can start with elections for the president, although parties ultimately could explore reforms even more daringly in state and local elections in areas such as campaign finance.

  • Missouri State Senate Hearing On Majority Voting Elections Through Instant Runoff Voting

    On March 31, 2008, the Missouri Senate Financial, Governmental Organizations and Elections Committee debated legislation that would implement instant runoff voting system in all primary, general and special elections. A majority voting method based on voters having the power to rank candidates in order of choice, instant runoff voting is used in several nations’ elections and in a growing number of American jurisdictions.

  • E-Newsletter February 5, 2008

  • Understanding Super Tuesday

    • Posted: February 4, 2008
    • Categories: FairVote

    A quick and original analysis of Super Tuesday.

  • How the Rules May Affect Tsunami Tuesday

    • Posted: January 30, 2008
    • Categories: FairVote

    A brief press conference detailing key facts to consider heading into the February 5th nomination contests. A summary report will be provided.

  • Musician Krist Novoselic Will Head Election Reform Group

    • Posted: January 23, 2008
    • Categories: FairVote

     FairVote, a national election reform group, greeted a new year with new leadership today, tapping former Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic to chair its Board of Directors. The position had been held for the past decade by former Congressman and 1980 independent presidential candidate John B. Anderson.