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A Proposal for Election REFORM by Coordinated State Ballot Initiatives

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Dear Friends and Activists,

We all worked enormously hard this election for the most progressive candidates we could find, and we had a couple winners. In addition, Ciro Rodriguez is in an upcoming runoff in TX-23 with very excellent prospects. In truth we probably had even more winners but for the election shenanigans we knew would be a handicap and which certainly took place. But the good news is that in spite of them, and thanks to your valiant participation, the people have regained both the House and the Senate. This at least allows us the power and opportunity to fight another day, and it is critically important that we continue to speak out in ever increasing numbers now that we have majorities who are more likely to influenced.

In the meantime, we have put a lot of thought into the next major strategic move. There will be bills in Congress to attempt real election reform, but there is no assurance that anything of substantive impact can survive a veto, assuming we can even pressure its passage. Therefore, we propose opening up a collateral front by putting together as many state ballot initiative campaigns as possible where laws can be passed directly on to the books. What we have in mind are two separate propositions in each such state, with the idea that there is synergy in collecting signatures for two related initiatives at the same time.

1) A paper ballot initiative of some kind

2) A clean money campaign financing measure


Critical to the success of these initiatives will be to establish a consensus of what we should shoot for, and to get everyone on the same page up front, so to speak. We recognize that with the question of paper ballots there are two camps who so far have been working perhaps at cross purposes. Some support H.R. 550 as an attempt to add on some kind of afterthought accountability to the existing electronic voting machines. Some others strongly oppose any variation of that bill because it doesn't go far enough, and are pushing for total elimination of the infernal Accu-Hack machines with their secret proprietary software.

What we are asking you, our participants, to do is to weigh in on what direction you think we should go in. We have set up a special referendum page where we ask if there should be mandatory paper ballots in all elections. Especially if you are one of the movers and shakers in the election protection movement, please email us so we can engage you in the drafting of the actual proposed initiatives.


While it is true that such initiatives cannot be pursued in all states, among the many where they can are most of the key presidential swing states. And by passing parallel state propositions where we can we would hope to build a de facto national standard, adding to the momentum for federal legislation, as in the recent spate of minimum wage increase intiatives, all of which succeeded.

With regards to clean money legislation, initiatives have been successful in AZ and ME to date, although limited to state office candidates only. We think we would like to also see some kind of help for federal candidates from state voters while we are working also to pass federal legislation. The recent measure in CA failed in large part because its supporters did not have the support of most of the unions for whatever reason, with the nurses association alone responsible for most of the votes it did get.

We are very interested in taking another shot at CA in particular with an initiative to public finance political campaigns for candidates, attempting to craft a measure that more people on our side can get behind, and as above to spark plug parallel initiatives in as many other states as possible where that can be done. So again, if you are an interested think tanker in the clean money movement, please email us so we can welcome you on to the team.

We would like to thank each and every one of you again and again for your magnificent and generous contributions, without which some of the candidates we were helping would have had no campaigns at all. And these same former and future candidates will be playing a key role in signature gathering for these upcoming state initiatives as they develop. We have moved the ball down the field and we are not going back.

Please take action NOW, so we can win all victories that are supposed to be ours.

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