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The State of Reform
Download Unite America’s free report
Download Unite America's free report analyzing the impact of four key political reforms.

Voter Protection Corps

Voter Protection Corps was founded by experts in election law to address a stark, urgent reality: The assault on voters' rights will almost certainly increase, intensify and become more insidious in advance of the 2020 Presidential election. Voter Protection Corps is building a state-by-state playbook to combat both intentional voter suppression tactics and disenfranchisement caused by insufficient planning. Early, data-driven solutions identified and implemented by experienced voter protection professionals can reduce barriers to casting and counting the ballots of eligible voters across the country in 2020.
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Gov. Steve Bullock is on the ballot as a Senate candidate and says local officials asked him for the switch.

Montana will move toward a vote-by-mail November election

Gov. Steve Bullock is giving county election officials across Montana permission to conduct the general election entirely by mail, as they did for the June primary.

The governor, who will be on the November ballot as the Democratic candidate for the Senate, said Thursday he was issuing the order at the request of the county clerks and election administrators. During the all-mail primary, the state saw a surge in voter turnout.

California, Nevada, Vermont and Washington, D.C. have already opted to send each voter an absentee ballot this fall due to the coronavirus. Before the pandemic, five other states — Colorado, Hawaii, Oregon, Utah and Washington — already had plans to conduct an all-mail election.

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Big Picture
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News media's vital to democracy, Americans say; then a partisan divide yawns

A massive new survey on media and democracy paints an unflattering picture in which the public trust in mainstream journalism is declining as perceived bias is growing.

The finding most optimistic for the preservation of a functional democracy: Five in six Americans, 84 percent, describe the news media as highly important to providing accurate information and holding the powerful accountable.

But a closer look at the numbers, released Thursday, shows something deeply problematic for civil society: a huge chasm in public attitudes toward the media, with Democrats generally favorable and Republicans openly hostile.

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The 24 states that have already made voting in November easier

With fewer than a hundred days to the presidential election, almost half the states have now altered some normal laws or regulations to make casting a ballot easier and safer in light of the coronavirus.

Most of the changes so far, but not all of them, are designed to promote voting by mail — the healthiest way to exercise the franchise this year, but a practice President Trump falsely alleges is an incubator of fraud.

Other states may yet modify their regulations, either voluntarily or as a consequence of one of the myriad lawsuits being pressed by voting rights groups. But time to implement changes is dwindling, fewer than 14 weeks, so the time seems ripe to look at the broad array of significant changes already locked down in these 24 states:

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Darren McCollester/Getty Images

Lawsuits have been filed this week in North Carolina and Virginia in an attempt to make it easier for people with disabilities, like the voter above, to cast their ballots in the fall election.

Blind voters sue for easier balloting in two states

With the presidential election now fewer than 100 days away, courthouses across the country are continuing to process a record flood of litigation hoping to improve access to voting during the coronavirus pandemic.

This week legal actions were filed in New York to extend the deadline for registration, and in both Virginia and North Carolina to improve the ability of blind citizens to vote from home.

Success for any of those lawsuits would likely increase turnout, but the only place where the extra voters might prove dispositive is North Carolina, where both the presidential and Senate contests look to be tossups. The other two states seem solidly blue.

These are the details of the cases:

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