Every generation since our country’s founding has had to fight to create a “more perfect union” . Today, the ideal that our founders imagined is facing unprecedented attack. For the first time in our nation’s history, we did not have a peaceful transition of power. Instead of settling our differences at the ballot box through accessible and transparent elections, there are rising threats of violence and sabotage. Our fundamental democratic principle of “one person, one vote,” is under attack.
Since 2021, states across the country have enacted 72 bills that restrict voter access or election administration and lawmakers are using extreme partisan gerrymandering to dilute the power of voters of color. Partisan politicians are launching politically-motivated fake election reviews to undermine the public’s faith in elections and putting in place the groundwork to overturn and sabotage future elections. Election administrators and poll workers are being threatened with violence, harassment, and firings for simply doing their jobs. Dark money groups across the political spectrum continue to flood state houses and Congress with millions in campaign spending in order to influence elections and policy and block progress on issues so many Americans care about.
With an absence of setting national voting standards, statehouses are the frontlines of the battle to protect our democracy. For that reason, End Citizens United / Let America Vote Action Fund is launching a State Democracy Scorecard to provide an overall assessment of the health of each state’s democracy and concerns about what the 2022 elections could mean for the country’s future.
While other organizations and analyses have created scorecards that looked at voting and anti-corruption issues as discrete policy areas, this is the first to combine them into an overall grade.