The right of all citizens to vote in free and fair elections constitutes the very foundation of democratic self-government. That is why Common Cause is fighting, in Washington and in state capitols across the country, to ensure that all citizens have easy access to the ballot and that every vote is counted as cast. And it is why we are working to end Gerrymandering, so that voters pick their representatives and not vice versa.
In Delaware, Common Cause is working with a coalition of other groups to pass same-day voter registration and no-excuse absentee voting. More specifically, we support SB 111 that would allow eligible voters to register to vote and cast their ballots on the same day, eliminating arbitrary deadlines that serve to disenfranchise many Delawareans, and HB 105 that would allow people to vote by absentee ballot without the need to provide an excuse. In 2015, with the support of CCDE members and allies across the state, we helped get both bills out of committee. In 2016 we aim to get them passed.
In addition, because CCDE believes that voters should choose their representatives, not the other way around, we support independent redistricting reform in Delaware. Every 10 years, state legislatures re-draw the boundaries of legislative districts, purportedly to reflect changes in population and ensure that everyone is fairly represented. Politicians, however, often draw districts to give themselves or their party an unfair advantage. Right now in Delaware, the majority party controls the redistricting process, and our elections are largely uncompetitive. And when elections are uncompetitive, elected officials are less accountable to the people. We support free, fair, and competitive elections. That is why we will work for independent redistricting reform in 2016.
Finally, since this is an election year, Common Cause Delaware plans to assist voters in making electoral decisions by providing information about how candidates stand on the issues our members care about. Stay tuned for more information, as we enter the campaign season.