FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Tuesday, March 14, 2023
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Ross Sherman, RepresentUs Media Relations Manager, 207-749-2660, firstname.lastname@example.org
WASHINGTON – Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) is the nation’s fastest-growing election reform, but growing opposition threatens to blunt its momentum. To help ensure RCV continues to give voters better choices, RepresentUs, Democracy Rising and Ranked Choice Voting Resource Center are releasing a first-of-its-kind guide on Tuesday to help advocates ensure a smooth first RCV election and defend RCV laws after they’re passed. RepresentUs and partners will officially launch the guide at the Protect the Win Symposium in Washington, D.C. that members of the public can watch here starting at 10am ET.
Protect the Win comes at a critical time for the RCV movement. In 2022, RepresentUs and the anti-corruption movement helped pass nine new RCV laws, including major victories in Nevada, Seattle, and Portland, Ore. Last week, Redondo Beach, Calif. and Burlington, Vt. voted to use RCV in city elections. At least 20 more states have introduced pro-RCV bills this year, including Connecticut, Minnesota and Vermont.
But when a movement is on the rise, it can be met with a backlash. Florida and Tennessee have already passed laws banning RCV, and lawmakers in South Dakota, Arizona, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota and Maine have introduced similar bans or repeals.
“Some politicians hate Ranked Choice Voting for the same reason the vast majority of Americans love it: it gives voters more power, weakens the two-party establishment’s grip on politics, and it forces candidates to appeal to a majority to win,” said RepresentUs CEO Joshua Graham Lynn. “Our goal with Protect the Win is simple: to make sure we keep winning. This guide is a critical tool. It gives advocates what they need to make sure new RCV laws work, defend them from attacks, and continue the momentum toward a government that represents us.”
In order to ensure RCV laws survive growing opposition and deliver on the promise of a more functional government, advocates need to know how to prepare for a series of challenges once their RCV law passes. One of the best outcomes after an RCV law passes is a successful first implementation. This new guide is designed to help advocates make that happen.
“This collaborative implementation guide helps bridge the gap between the ideas of advocates and the actions of election administrators,” said Ranked Choice Voting Resource Center Interim Executive Director Rosemary Blizzard. “The end goal is a successful implementation and this guide will go a long way in making that happen.”
Protect the Win shares best practices for supporting a successful RCV implementation, and recommends proven strategies for pushing back against opposition. Specifically, the guide includes blueprints for how advocates can defend RCV in court and in state legislatures, the best ways to educate voters and candidates about RCV, and the technical side of RCV implementation. It also features case studies of recent high-profile RCV victories, including Alaska, Maine and New York City with interviews with leaders behind those successful voter education campaigns.
“Protect the Win shines a light on the incredible work of community leaders to implement Ranked Choice Voting successfully,” said Democracy Rising Director of Programs Grace Ramsey. “The voter education efforts discussed in this guide provide a roadmap for future leaders and demonstrate the power that continued investment in voter education has to engage communities in the political process.”
RepresentUs is America’s leading nonpartisan organization fighting to protect and strengthen democracy. We unite unlikely allies from across the political spectrum who put country over party to pass pro-democracy laws, fight corruption, and defeat authoritarian threats. We have won more than 170 victories in cities and states across America since our founding 10 years ago. Each win is one step closer to our vision of making America the world’s strongest democracy.