New operation aimed at making it easier to vote in NH and getting big money out of politics
End Citizens United (ECU) and Let America Vote (LAV) today announced a new field operation in New Hampshire for the 2020 election cycle. The joint operation will work to elect legislative candidates, provide volunteers and organizational support for endorsed candidates, and work with in-state partners to make voting safe, accessible, and fair. Jeff Taylor will oversee ground operations as New Hampshire State Director.
As part of the new operation, the groups are already working to pressure Governor Chris Sununu to make voting safe and accessible amid the COVID-19 pandemic. On Friday, the groups sent letters to Governor Sununu and Secretary of State William Gardner to expand absentee voting by classifying the COVID-19 pandemic as a valid excuse for voting absentee. The letters are part of a 50-state grassroots effort that will call on Congress to provide more election preparedness funding, implement a no-excuse vote-by-mail option by the November general election, and add additional safeguards to guarantee safe and sanitary in-person voting. Click here to read more about the SAFE Project.
“New Hampshire is a battleground state and a crucial state in the fight to root out corruption and make government work for everyone,” said Tiffany Muller, president of End Citizens United and Let America Vote. “The state legislature has already passed several comprehensive government and voting reform bills only to see Governor Sununu veto them over and over again. We’re expanding our in-state operations because we have a prime opportunity to flip the Governorship, hold onto the state legislature, and pass crucial reforms that New Hampshire families are calling for. We’re excited about this new on-the-ground effort and we look forward to making New Hampshire a model of success for other states.”
Governor Sununu has a dismal record of vetoing legislation aimed at getting Big Money out of politics and protecting and expanding the right to vote. In 2019, Sununu vetoed legislation to call on Congress to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United and limit Big Money in politics. He also vetoed a bill last year that would have established an independent redistricting commission and another bill that would allow no-excuse absentee voting.
Why we need optional vote by mail:
States must move now to make our elections more secure, more efficient, and more accessible to all eligible voters, all while protecting public health and safety. One critical way to ensure the virus doesn’t keep people from the ballot box is to bring the ballot box to them through vote-by-mail or no-excuse absentee ballots. It’s a time-tested, secure process in place in states across the country. Voters receive their ballots in the mail or online, fill them out at home, and then mail them back or submit them at secure ballot drop-off locations. Voters should be allowed to request ballots in person, by phone, or online. The ballots should include pre-paid envelopes to encourage voters to return them and states must launch public education campaigns to ensure voters know about the changes.
Both LAV and ECU have been active and engaged in New Hampshire in recent election cycles. ECU’s first-ever Senate endorsement was Senator Maggie Hassan’s campaign during the 2016 cycle. The group’s $1.4 million ad buy in that race continues to be one of its biggest ad buys ever. ECU was also instrumental in helping Congressman Chris Pappas flip NH-01 in 2018, and has endorsed Pappas’ re-election campaign. In August 2019, ECU endorsed Senator Jeanne Shaheen’s re-election campaign. LAV’s grassroots team helped turn both the state House and Senate blue in 2018 by knocking on more than 80,000 doors. LAV’s New Hampshire team helped flip two dozen legislative seats, and helped clinch a majority in the Senate by knocking more than 23,000 doors across six districts.