News. Debate. Community. Levers for a better democracy.
The State of Reform
Download Unite America’s free report
Download Unite America's free report analyzing the impact of four key political reforms.
Coronavirus Updates

Mail-in balloting surged last month. Don't let that ease your worries.

Burden is a professor of political science and director of the Elections Research Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Keep Reading Show less

Add Kentucky to list of states being sued to expand voting access

Kentucky is the latest state to face a lawsuit asking for election law easement in the face of the coronavirus.

The Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights and the American Civil Liberties Union are among those who sued Wednesday, but with a bit of a twist: They are out to reverse one of the very few state laws enacted since the pandemic began that was designed to make voting more difficult this year.

Still, the new suit is similar to dozens of others filed this year that seek to make battleground or red-leaning states relax their election regulations and expand voting by mail.

Keep Reading Show less

Biden campaign creates a senior post for protecting voting rights

Joe Biden has created a new senior campaign position to focus on protecting the right to vote in an election remade by the coronavirus.

Rachana Desai Martin, a senior Democratic Party official, will be the national director for voter protection and senior counsel on the legal team, the presumptive nominee's campaign announced Tuesday.

It appears to be the first job of its kind in a modern-day major-party presidential campaign, but the circumstances are also nearly without precedent — the first national election in a century during a nationwide public health emergency. Martin will focus on ballot accessibility for all voters and combating the disenfranchisement of people of color.

Keep Reading Show less

Absentee voting rights push yields a partial win — and three new suits

Advocates for easing restrictions on absentee voting during the coronavirus pandemic have won a split decision in federal court in South Carolina.

A judge on Monday barred the state from requiring a witness signature on mail-in ballots for the congressional and legislative primaries in two weeks, but she said the state could require those ballots to arrive by the time the polls close.

The ruling was the most important news over the holiday weekend for the cause of easier voting this year, which also brought fresh lawsuits challenging a diverse set of rules in North Carolina, Michigan and New York. These are the latest developments:

Keep Reading Show less

New bipartisan group pushes for safe and secure voting of all kinds

With millions of voters scared of coronavirus exposure, a surge of absentee ballots is coming in November even if the rules are not relaxed and more federal help is not delivered — a reality obscured by the intensifying partisan rhetoric over vote-by-mail's virtues and flaws.

And so a new group, VoteSafe, has been launched in hopes of lowering the volume and magnifying the needs of election administrators of both parties preparing for the first Election Day in a century during a nationwide public health emergency.

The organization, unveiled last week, has an A-list bipartisan pedigree and the backing of many prominent good-government groups — an alliance made possible because the group is pushing remote voting and use of polling places with equal force.

Keep Reading Show less