On Tuesday, October 13, entrepreneur and former presidential candidate Andrew Yang joined an installment of FairVote’s webinar series on The Future of American Elections. The webinar, titled “The Yang Gang Is Ready For The End of Tactical Voting,” was moderated by FairVote Senior Communications Fellow David Daley.
Daley and Yang discussed the structural problems in our political system and how ranked choice voting (RCV) can change the incentive structure for our politicians to better serve the people.
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- FairVote President and CEO Rob Richie kicks off the webinar by discussing FairVote’s work and the recent success of election reforms around the country (0:00).
- Yang says that Americans are disenchanted with politics because money has overrun the system, an inhuman economy has alienated them, and the government has failed to pay attention to their problems (6:40).
- Yang argues that due to gerrymandering that creates ‘safe seats,’ members of Congress are incentivized to cater to ideologically extreme primary voters rather than solve societal problems. Yang says that RCV with open primaries would change these incentives so that legislators must cater to a broader segment of the population (9:10).
- Daley and Yang discuss how RCV could improve primary elections by ensuring that votes are not ‘wasted’ and voters do not need to worry about supporting a ‘spoiler’ candidate (12:06).
- Yang suggests that RCV could lead to a more dynamic political process where more candidates suggest innovative ideas in their campaigns (17:06).
- Yang says that RCV would be most effective if coupled with other election reforms such as congressional term limits, open primaries, and limiting dark money in campaigns (19:08).
- Daley asks Yang a question from a viewer about how modern technology could impact the voting process (23:20).
- Yang talks about how support for RCV crosses the political spectrum, pointing to examples of conservatives and Libertarians who support the reform (26:41). He urges us to lift up the voices of principled legislators who support reforming our elections even though they were elected under the current system (28:01).
- Yang says that the highest priority of the next Congress should be getting coronavirus pandemic relief to Americans, and that democracy reform should be on the agenda soon after that (42:51).
On Tuesday, October 27 at 12 pm EDT, our fifth webinar in the series will air to discuss The Conservative Argument for RCV. It will feature David Daley, Cato Institute senior fellow Walter Olson, attorney and FairVote board member Jennifer Nassour, and Stan Lockhart of Utah RCV.
You can sign up for the webinar here.
If you want to watch the past webinars we have held this year, a full list can be found here.