Democracy Advocacy Groups


  1. Democracy Advocacy Groups
    1. Brennan Center for Justice
    2. Campaign Legal Center
    3. Center for American Progress
    4. FairVote
    5. Freedom House
    6. League of Women Voters
    7. National Popular Vote
    8. Protect Democracy
    9. Our Common Purpose
    10. Unite America
    11. Voting Rights Alliance
    12. Voting Rights Lab
  2. Other Organizations
    1. Authoritarian Warning Survey
    2. Bright Line Watch
    3. Carnegie Endowment
    4. Election Reformers Network
    5. Electoral Integrity Project
    6. Journal of Democracy
    7. Law Forward
    8. MacArthur Foundation
    9. States United Democracy Center
  3. Addenda
    1. Making Voting Easier
      1. Establish same-day registration and universal automatic voter registration (AVR)
      2. Expand early voting
      3. Make election day a National Election Holiday, perhaps changing it to Veterans Day
      4. Provide enough polling places and keep them open long enough to prevent long lines
      5. Provide voting by mail to everyone
      6. Use simple, clear, standardized ballots
    2. Six Principles for Federal Legislation to Combat Election Subversion
    3. Voting Rights Legislation
    4. Safeguarding Democracy Through the Courts

Democracy Advocacy Groups

Brennan Center for Justice

The Brennan Center for Justice is an independent, nonpartisan law and policy organization that works to reform, revitalize, and when necessary, defend our country’s systems of democracy and justice. 

  • Recommendations
    • Easy Voting
      • Enact Automatic Voter Registration
      • Restore the Voting Rights Act
      • Expand Early Voting
      • Prevent Long Lines at the Polls
    • Elections
      • Upgrade and Secure Voting Infrastructure
      • Protect Election Officials
    • Electoral Systems
      • Replace Electoral College with direct election of the president by a national popular vote
    • Gerrymandering
      • Make Redistricting Independent
    • Suffrage
      • Restore Voting Rights to Citizens With Past Criminal Convictions
    • Voter suppression
      • Protect Eligible Voters From Improper Purges of the Voter Rolls
      • Protect Against Deceptive Election Practices

Center for American Progress

The Center for American Progress is an independent, nonpartisan policy institute that is dedicated to improving the lives of all Americans through bold, progressive ideas, as well as strong leadership and concerted action. Our aim is not just to change the conversation, but to change the country.

  • Recommendations on Gerrymandering
    • Establish independent commissions to oversee the redistricting process
    • Draw voter-determined districts
    • Select maps that maximize representation for communities of color
    • Select maps that provide for reasonable levels of competition
    • Put a thumb on the scale in favor of district compactness
    • Make the process transparent


  • Recommendations
    • Use Ranked Choice Voting for single office elections, e.g president, governor, mayor
    • Use Proportional Ranked Choice Voting for assemblies, e.g. legislatures, city councils, school boards
      • For large assemblies such as the House of Representatives, Proportional RCV should be used with multi-member districts.

Freedom House

League of Women Voters

Protect Democracy

  • Recommendations on Shaping the Democracy of Tomorrow
    • Replace winner-take-all elections with more proportional systems of representation.
    • Legalize fusion voting to help break the two-party doom loop.
      • Fusion Voting
        • Fusion allows multiple political parties to nominate the same candidate on the ballot. With fusion, a centrist minor party can cross-endorse the Democratic or Republican candidate demonstrating a stronger commitment to democracy and the rule of law. This would allow voters, parties, and candidates to put aside differences in order to form the cross-partisan, pro-democracy coalitions needed to stem the rising authoritarian threat.

Our Common Purpose

  • A sample of OCP’s 31 recommendations:
    • Substantially enlarge the House of Representatives through federal legislation to make it and the Electoral College more representative of the nation’s population.
    • Introduce ranked-choice voting in presidential, congressional, and state elections.
    • Amend or repeal and replace the 1967 law that mandates single-member districts for the House, so that states have the option to use multi-member districts on the condition that they adopt a non-winner-take-all election model.
    • Establish, through federal legislation, eighteen-year terms for Supreme Court justices with appointments staggered such that one nomination comes up during each term of Congress.
    • Change federal election day to Veterans Day
    • Establish same-day registration and universal automatic voter registration
    • Establish that voting in federal elections be a requirement of citizenship, just as jury service is in the states.
    • Restore federal and state voting rights to citizens with felony convictions.

Unite America

Voting Rights Alliance

Voting Rights Lab

Other Organizations

Authoritarian Warning Survey

Bright Line Watch

Carnegie Endowment

Election Reformers Network

Electoral Integrity Project

Journal of Democracy

Law Forward

MacArthur Foundation

States United Democracy Center


Making Voting Easier

Establish same-day registration and universal automatic voter registration (AVR)
Expand early voting
Make election day a National Election Holiday, perhaps changing it to Veterans Day
Provide enough polling places and keep them open long enough to prevent long lines
Provide voting by mail to everyone
Use simple, clear, standardized ballots

Six Principles for Federal Legislation to Combat Election Subversion

  • Six Principles for Federal Legislation to Combat Election Subversion, Protect Democracy
    • Paper ballot requirements
      • Future efforts to subvert election outcomes will likely involve creating doubt and uncertainty about the actual count of the popular vote in a jurisdiction.
      • Congress should require that, in federal elections, all voters must cast their ballots in paper form.
    • Chain of custody protections for ballots, other election records, and election equipment
      • Once voters cast a paper ballot, those ballots must be preserved throughout the tabulation and certification processes. Federal law already requires that ballots be retained for 22 months, but specifies no standards for how they should be stored and monitored throughout that period. 
      • Congress should direct relevant agencies to promulgate more specific regulations governing how ballots, other election records, and election equipment should be handled, and should also prohibit reckless actions by election officials that endanger the preservation or security of records and equipment.
    • Judicial review of the vote-counting process
      • Several states have passed laws that shift responsibility for counting ballots and certifying elections in the hands of highly partisan officials. This increases the likelihood that these officials may seek to use their control of the vote-counting process to improperly influence the outcome of an election, for instance by baselessly discarding certain ballots. Congress should ensure that election administration decisions, as well as decisions about ballot-handling, are explicitly subject to federal judicial scrutiny, for example by creating a statutory right to have one’s vote properly counted.
    • Preventing partisan takeovers of election administration
      • In several states, laws have been proposed or enacted that would make it easier for state legislators and other partisan actors to take control over election administration from local election officials, which would then allow them to more easily manipulate or subvert the results. 
      • Congress should prohibit the removal of local election officials absent good cause, such as substantial neglect or malfeasance.
    • Protections for election workers
      • Election officials and poll workers play a crucial role in the infrastructure of our democracy, but they are currently under attack. In 2020, and continuing into 2021, election officials have faced unprecedented threats, including death threats, because of the false allegations that the 2020 election was “rigged.” In addition, states are passing harsh new laws to penalize even inadvertent errors and mistakes by election officials and poll workers. Congress should reaffirm that intimidation of election workers is unlawful and strengthen protections for them.
    • Heightened penalties for election manipulation or subversion
      • The 2020 election did not turn into a full-blown crisis in large part because local and state election officials refused to bow to pressure from President Trump and others to subvert the results. However, voters cannot necessarily rely on similar forbearance in future elections,
      • Federal law already prohibits individuals, including election officials, from manipulating or subverting election results, but Congress should increase penalties for violations of those provisions to deter future attempts at subversion.
  • How Democrats can neutralize the biggest threat to democracy, Jennifer Rubin WaPo
    • Democrats, in their efforts to pass legislation that would protect voting rights, have yet to address the biggest threat voters now face: the blatant attempt by state Republicans to override the will of the voters by taking control of election administration away from local officials and handing it to partisans.
    • The nonpartisan Protect Democracy has released a list of critical reforms that Democrats should include in their compromise legislation coming together in the Senate.
    • Protect Democracy’s proposals have two overarching benefits: They address the most potent threat to democracy, and they are so reasonable that Sen. Joe Manchin III (D-W.Va.) may find Republicans’ opposition as ridiculous and unacceptable as their opposition to a bipartisan Jan. 6 commission.
    • In addition to Protect Democracy’s six suggestions, defense of democratic elections requires one additional step: the prosecution of the former president and his accomplices. The losing Republican president sought to pressure Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to “find” new votes; to persuade Michigan lawmakers to throw the state’s electoral votes to him; to cajole the vice president to violate his oath and refuse to accede to the electoral college results; and to pressure Justice Department officials (with threats to replace them) to declare the election fraudulent.
    • If we do not intend to punish him for all that, new laws are useless. We need both the legal tools and the will to use them in defense of democratic elections. Only by prosecuting blatant attempts to overthrow our elections can we avert future coup attempts. The ball is in Attorney General Merrick Garland’s court.

Voting Rights Legislation

View Voting Rights Legislation

Safeguarding Democracy Through the Courts

  • The GOP should think twice before it tries to mess with elections, Jennifer Rubin WaPo
    • In addition to a slew of efforts to impair access to the ballot, Republicans throughout the country are attempting to shift control of elections away from local authorities or nonpartisan officials and toward partisan GOP operatives. But they should think twice before proceeding with such tactics; they might be venturing into some dangerous territory.
    • This sort of election rigging is difficult to combat at the federal level, even if Democrats manage to pass voting reforms protecting access to the ballot or paper audit trails. Nevertheless, legal barriers exist that might deter election rigging or a shift in control of elections from nonpartisan to partisan control.
    • For starters, it is worth remembering that it is illegal under state and federal law to change vote outcomes.
    • In addition, federal law says that any person who “knowingly and willfully deprives, defrauds, or attempts to deprive or defraud the residents of a State of a fair and impartially conducted election process” has committed a felony. It also makes it a crime for a “person acting under color of law” to “willfully fail or refuse to tabulate, count, and report” legal votes. In other words, simply putting control of elections in the hands of partisan Republicans does not mean they can flip election results at will.
    • However, the potential to disrupt and discredit elections is great. And in the case of federal elections, some state legislatures might seek to certify their own slate of electors claiming the voters’ choice was invalidated by fraud.
    • There are multiple ways to try to head off these efforts.
      • First, the Justice Department should prepare to enforce federal laws, which in some cases may entail criminal prosecution of state officials who fix elections. The department can certainly deploy voting-rights lawyers to observe elections and receive complaints from poll officials and voters. 
      • Second, the 2020 presidential election showed that revision of the Electoral Count Act of 1887 — the legislation that came out of the disputed 1876 presidential election — is essential to close loopholes and avenues for mischief that the MAGA crowd tried to exploit. Among the required changes: Clarify that the vice president’s role in revealing the electoral college votes is purely ceremonial; require a supermajority to challenge electoral votes; and clarify that state legislatures cannot replace popular vote results with their own slate of electors.
      • Third, pro-democracy advocates must mount an effective campaign to educate voters. Forget denouncing the “big lie” that the election was stolen, for now. A more effective campaign may be to convince voters to prevent politicians from reelecting themselves or messing with elections. The reason for putting elections in nonpartisan hands is precisely to prevent those with temporary control of the levers of power from keeping themselves in office. That basic message is more salient than ever: Do not let politicians take away your vote. On that fundamental proposition, even some Republicans might block measures designed to make it easier to steal elections.
  • The Justice Department is suing Georgia. Don’t expect Garland to end there, Joyce White Vance WaPo
    • On Friday, Attorney General Merrick Garland delivered on his promise to use all his statutory authority to protect the right to vote: He announced he was suing the state of Georgia for enacting a law he said the legislature passed to deny Black people that right.
    • United States v. Georgia is a claim under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, which prohibits states from adopting practices that deny or interfere with the rights of U.S. citizens to vote because of their race or color. 
    • Now, voters in Georgia are getting soaked, and the only tool the DOJ has to protect them is Section 2, a remedy that Ginsburg noted was weaker than Section 5 because faulty laws could remain in place for years, affecting minority voters in multiple election cycles.
    • Garland has taken all this into account in United States v. Georgia. Here are five things to know about the lawsuit:
  • Our democracy may depend on judges, Jennifer Rubin WaPo
    • Judges in more than 60 cases dismissed disgraced former president Donald Trump’s attempts to overthrow an election he lost by a significant margin.
    • Now, judges are systematically dealing with the aftermath of the Jan. 6 attack. They are holding lawyers accountable for making spurious claims that helped ignite the armed insurrection.
    • In other contexts, we see judges denounce Jan. 6 defendants for their role in a violent uprising.
    • In Arizona, a judge has played another critical role in upholding the rule of law and democratic elections, ordering the state’s Republican-led Senate on Monday to produce records from its phony audit of the 2020 election in Maricopa County. 
    • While this is a state law, federal law also requires officials to maintain custody of election documents. The Justice Department recently issued a warning that “the obligation to retain and preserve election records remains intact regardless of who has physical possession of those records.” 
    • Most states have stiff laws against vote tampering and falsification. Foes of democratic elections should be forewarned that courts are unlikely to shed their oaths and become accomplices in the downfall of democracy.