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Voter Turnout

Quiet Desperation and American Fascism

Robert Kuttner | Posted 11.23.2015 | Politics
Robert Kuttner

A lot of the people who stay home would vote for Democrats if they bothered to vote at all. This problem goes far deeper than better techniques for getting out the vote. It reflects a massive decay of civil society, a deep disinterest and contempt for government and politics, one that often seems richly earned. This is also the soil in which fascism grows. As political scientists have demonstrated for more than a century, it is "mass society," in which people are disconnected from the "little platoons" beloved of Edmund Burke and the local associations celebrated by Toqueville, where a strongman can suddenly seem the solution to people's inchoate frustrations with their own lives and the irrelevance of politics.

Appealing To Black Women Should Be A Top Priority For Presidential Candidates

Keisha N. Blain | Posted 11.12.2015 | Politics
Keisha N. Blain

Despite their influence at the polls, black women's concerns are undervalued in contemporary political campaigns. Few presidential candidates have been vocal about black women's vulnerability to state-sanctioned violence. Candidates who ignore black women voters do so at their own peril.

Why Upgrading Election Infrastructure Is an Investment in Democracy

Seth Flaxman | Posted 11.09.2015 | Politics
Seth Flaxman

County, town and state governments pay for running an election, and it's done on a shoestring budget. Election administrators are the stewards of our democracy, and yet their budgets are often an afterthought.

Democrats Lose Virginia Senate Control Because They Don't Vote

Michael P. McDonald | Posted 11.04.2015 | Politics
Michael P. McDonald

In the latest example of the ineptness of the Democratic Party and their supporters, the Democrats lost a chance to win control of the Virginia Senate because their voters failed to show up at the same rates as Republicans.

New Motor Voter: A Step Forward for California and Democracy

Lorena Gonzalez | Posted 10.08.2015 | Politics
Lorena Gonzalez

In a democratic system, no right is more fundamental or necessary than the right to vote. So why are citizens required to opt-in to exercise their right to vote through voter registration?

Clearing Away Barriers to Voter Registration

Mark Ridley-Thomas | Posted 10.07.2015 | Los Angeles
Mark Ridley-Thomas

In California, there are about 7 million people who are eligible to vote but never registered to do so, including 1.2 million in Los Angeles County. It's a shocking statistic, considering the sacrifices made to win passage of the historic Voting Rights Act, which marked its 50th anniversary this year.

The Case For Voting

Sean McElwee | Posted 09.21.2015 | Politics
Sean McElwee

Political scientist Larry Sabato once said, "Every election is determined by the people who show up." Though the quote is at first blush rather banal, it carries profound implications for American democracy.

The 2014 Electorate: The Continuing White Decline

Michael P. McDonald | Posted 07.20.2015 | Politics
Michael P. McDonald

The report reveals the continued changing racial and ethnic face of America, which Census demographers project to become majority-minority by 2044. A main reason is that Whites are simply not having as many children. As soon as 2020, demographers project the country's children will be majority-minority.

Mark Blumenthal

HUFFPOLLSTER: 2014 Marked A New Low In Voter Turnout | Mark Blumenthal | Posted 07.17.2015 | Politics

A Census benchmark confirms that 2014 turnout was the lowest in decades. Ted Cruz joins the chorus criticizing Fox News for its use of polls to select...

'Government of Few' Report Highlights New Tools Exposing Our Broken Democracy

Rob Richie | Posted 06.15.2015 | Politics
Rob Richie

The first step to change is admitting the problem. Although we focus on the "Decided Dozen" states in this report as emblematic of what is wrong with elections in the United States, these problems extend across all 50 states.

How to Create a More Progressive America

Sean McElwee | Posted 05.11.2015 | Politics
Sean McElwee

The best chance for a progressive agenda lies not in challenging Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination but in making sure she gets the White House, and then holding her accountable once she's there.

Voter Supression Isn't Over

Sean McElwee | Posted 05.01.2015 | Politics
Sean McElwee

Across the country, conservatives in particular have debated fiercely whether to pursue voter suppression to remain competitive in an increasingly diverse electorate.

For the Effects of Voting, Look to Policy, Not Elections

Sean McElwee | Posted 06.28.2015 | Politics
Sean McElwee

The class bias in turnout affects the economic liberalism of the state legislature. Specifically, when class bias is low, the liberal opinions of the public translate into liberal policy. But when class bias is high, liberal public opinion has no effect on policy.

Don't Let Ferguson Turnout Numbers Fool You. America, We Have a Problem.

Rob Richie | Posted 06.09.2015 | Politics
Rob Richie

Let's cheer for Ferguson -- but keep our eye on the bigger truth that our representative democracy is weakened when voter turnout is so low and so poorly reflective of our citizens. But before we rush to make any sweeping conclusions, keep in mind that "argument by anecdote" is dangerously seductive.

Mark Blumenthal

HUFFPOLLSTER: Americans Favor A Nuclear Deal With Iran | Mark Blumenthal | Posted 03.31.2015 | Politics

Polls find support for a nuclear deal with Iran, but by varying margins. Clinton's support drops in three swing states but she still runs ahead in Ohi...

Ariel Edwards-Levy

Americans Want Voting To Be Easier, But Not Mandatory | Ariel Edwards-Levy | Posted 03.30.2015 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- Earlier this month, Oregon became the first state in the nation to automatically register voters using data from the Department of Mot...

'Dismal' Doesn't Even Begin To Describe LA's Voter Turnout

The Huffington Post | Lydia O'Connor | Posted 03.04.2015 | Politics

With fewer than one out of 10 eligible voters casting ballots at Los Angeles polls Tuesday, America's second-largest city continued a pattern of shock...

Obama Calls Out America's Dismal Voter Turnout: 'Why Are You Staying Home?'

The Huffington Post | Mollie Reilly | Posted 02.26.2015 | Politics

President Barack Obama urged Americans frustrated with the lack of progress on immigration reform to voice their discontent at the ballot box, lamenti...

Politicians Are Always Giving College Students the Shaft: Why Shouldn't They?

Matt Teitelbaum | Posted 04.25.2015 | Politics
Matt Teitelbaum

As a politically active student, I am incredibly frustrated by the lack of political engagement demonstrated by my peers. When asked how they feel about the government, I find young people are very quick to blame politicians for many of their problems.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Says The Campaign Field Is 'Being Polluted By Money'

The Huffington Post | Ashley Alman | Posted 02.05.2015 | Politics

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg doubled down Wednesday on her belief that Citizens United was the worst decision made by the current U.S. Su...

Ariel Edwards-Levy

Millennials Really Don't Think Everybody Should Vote | Ariel Edwards-Levy | Posted 05.08.2015 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- Young Americans aren't just less likely to vote than their older compatriots. They're also less likely to believe that everyone should c...

Rush Limbaugh Is Emblematic of Our Political Rot

Don Tapscott | Posted 01.17.2015 | Politics
Don Tapscott

To restore legitimacy and trust, we need a second era of democracy based on integrity and accountability, and with stronger, more open institutions, active citizen citizenship and a culture of public discourse and participation.

Dueling Dollars Diminish American Democracy

Frank Islam | Posted 01.11.2015 | Politics
Frank Islam

The bottom line is that American voter participation in the electoral process has always been a fragile crucible. The influx of big money has put new cracks in that crucible - and if not stopped could shatter it altogether.

Sunday Roundup

Arianna Huffington | Posted 01.08.2015 | Politics
Arianna Huffington

This week, America went to the polls. Despite much breathless post-election chatter about "mandates" and "midterm waves," the really big story was not who people voted for but how many people sat this one out. With only 37 percent of eligible voters heading to the polls, turnout was the lowest it's been since 1942 -- when voters were understandably distracted. The disconnect between the governed and the government has grown to historic proportions. Why? Perhaps because of the disconnect between a "recovering" economy and people's daily lives. This might explain why initiatives increasing the minimum wage were passed by huge margins in all four states where they appeared on the ballot, even as candidates opposing a long-delayed increase at the federal level won. People want change, but they've lost hope in the ability of national leaders to bring it. Those celebrating having their ticket to Washington paid for by lost faith and disillusionment should not miss this actual mandate.

The Agony of Victory May Soon Face Republicans

Fred Lundgren | Posted 01.07.2015 | Politics
Fred Lundgren

Clint Eastwood said, "Winning an election is a good-news, bad-news kind of thing. OK, now you're the mayor. The bad news is, now you're the mayor."