Bill Theobald is senior writer at The Fulcrum, where he focuses on everything to do with voting. This December marks his 40th anniversary in the business, and he still believes -- now more than ever -- that the glow from great journalism can truly light the world.
The intensity of the presidential campaign appears to be creating a huge number of sore losers in waiting.
More than two out of every five supporters of President Donald Trump, and of former Vice President Joe Biden, say in a survey out Sunday that they will not accept the results of the coming election if their candidate is defeated. And decent numbers in both camps say they're prepared to protest a result they don't like.
The numbers from the new Reuters/Ipsos poll provide fresh evidence of the fragility of American electoral democracy, which has relied for more than two centuries on the losers deciding the election was fair enough to peacefully accept the outcome.
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At the end of what has been the most tumultuous campaign season in recent history, a national good governance group is launching a new effort to tackle what appears to be the impossible:
Bridging the enormous partisan divide that has set neighbor against neighbor and made governing the country so difficult.
FixUs, an initiative to help Americans better understand our differences, announced Thursday the results of a national survey outlining these differences — and some areas of agreement — that will serve as a springboard to the program called "A National Dialogue on Common Values, Goals and Aspirations."
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Here's how far the Federal Election Commission has sunk in failing to carry out its job of overseeing the rules of presidential and congressional campaign finance.
Barring a highly unlikely turn of events, a sort of line of shame will be crossed in three months: For the first time, responsibility for enforcing the laws regulating money in federal politics will essentially pass to the citizenry, sidelining the agency created to do the work.
The FEC has not had enough commissioners to do any substantive business for almost all the past year, a consequence of the partisan deadlock over campaign finance regulation. Odds are scant any new members will be confirmed until after January's inauguration. And right around then, a dispute will have been gathering dust for so long at the FEC that the case can be moved to federal court.
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- Florida GOP seeks to block local campaign finance laws - The Fulcrum ›