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There's one democracy reform best suited to stopping Trump's comeback

Kresky is counsel for Independent Voting, which works to promote the political clout of unaffiliated voters. An earlier version of this piece first ran in Independent Voter News.

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Voters in San Diego will soon have easier access to campaign finance data for candidates in local races.

Coalition brings transparency to San Diego campaigns

Rocco is a freelance writer. A version of this story first appeared on Independent Voter News.

Determining who's footing the bill for political campaigns and has long been a challenge for voters. But the people of San Diego will soon be able to track and analyze the campaign contributions and independent expenditures of local political campaigns with an online dashboard created by a coalition of nonpartisan political reform organizations.

While campaign finance information has long been available to the public, it is hard for a non-tech-savvy individual to make sense of the numerous spreadsheets and PDF files, said Amy Tobia, co-leader of Represent San Diego, a local branch of the national anti-corruption organization. This difficulty effectively prevents the public from accessing the available information.

Hence, the San Diego Campaign Finance Dashboard.

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Best electoral advantage is party, not incumbency, new study underscores

Griffiths is the editor of Independent Voter News, where a version of this story first appeared.

A new report reinforces something political reform advocates and experts have been saying for years: Partisan identity is becoming the primary determinant in nearly every election.

The "Monopoly Politics" study, a biennial project of the electoral reform advocacy group FairVote, predicts the results of all 435 seats in the House long before Election Day. The 2020 version, released last week, predicted 357 "high confidence seats" with a 99.7 percent accuracy rate. The group bases its predictions on prior voting patterns, not on polling results, a methodology that has worked since FairVote began the project in 1997.

The predictions were made fully two years ahead of time, in November 2018, a startling reminder of how little competition there is in congressional contests and the consequence this has on the nation's politics. The authors say a central takeaway is the increasing role partisanship plays in the outcome of such elections.

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Pandemic's made partisanship even worse, independent voters say

Griffiths is the editor of Independent Voter News, where a version of this story first appeared.

A whopping four out of five independents say the coronavirus pandemic has made partisanship in politics even clearer — and more critical to combat.

That's the top takeaway from the second nationwide poll conducted by Independent Voting, one of the main advocacy groups seeking to galvanize the two-fifths of Americans who don't identify with either major party and view their duopoly as one of democracy's major ills.

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