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Reuters: In U.S. redistricting fight, citizens come armed with a new weapon: their own maps

(Reuters) - On a recent evening, Tyler Daye, an organizer with Common Cause North Carolina, hosted an online seminar for residents of the city of Wilson on an important but arcane topic: redistricting. With the help of publicly available mapping software known as Districtr, Daye clicked through maps of federal and state voting districts, showing how in each case Republican lawmakers in 2011 neatly cleaved the city in two, dividing the largely Black eastern half from the mostly white western half. “When your communities are split, your voting power and representation is split as well,” he told attendees. “This attacks the very backbone, the very core of our democratic system, which is having the voters, the citizens, picking their legislators. Through this system, it’s the other way around.” ... “It’s almost like a light-bulb moment,” said Bob Phillips, the executive director of Common Cause North Carolina, a voting rights organization. “We feel we’ve been able to reach people in ways we never have.”

Gannett/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Ron Johnson defends pass-through tax provision as Democrats accuse him of doing the bidding of his top donors

Jay Heck of Common Cause Wisconsin called the tax provision "one of the most glaring examples of quid-pro-quo pay-to-play politics I've ever seen." "The idea a U.S. Senator would stand in the way of a major initiative of his own party on a very specific provision of a complicated tax bill, and the fact it benefited two of his largest donors, I just think is pretty eye-opening," he said. "My goodness what a great investment for the Uihleins and Diane Hendricks."

Voting & Elections 08.5.2021

Austin American-Statesman: Abbott calls second special session as House Democrats remain in Washington

"The decision to call a second special session is nothing more than a partisan power grab to distract us from the real challenges our communities face, like taking action to slow the spread of the delta variant and address our failing energy grid," said Stephanie Gómez, associate director of Common Cause Texas.

Voting & Elections 07.30.2021

Associated Press: Experts raise alarms over fundraising for GOP ballot reviews

“You are not giving them a real audit at the end of the day,” Susannah Goodman, an election security expert with Common Cause, said of the GOP reviews in Arizona and elsewhere. “It’s like going to a snake oil medicine doctor and paying him a lot of money and he gives you a bottle of green goop saying this will cure your cancer.”

Voting & Elections 07.8.2021

NBC News: Texas Republicans revive voting restriction bills to begin special session

“Anyone who wants to go testify, read the bill, they’re going to have 24-36 hours to do it,” said Anthony Gutierrez, executive director of Common Cause Texas, a group working to defeat the legislation. “It definitely feels like a complete subversion of democracy to try and get their voter suppression bill passed.”

Voting & Elections 07.6.2021

CNN: Republican candidates back Trump's election lies across the 2021 and 2022 maps

"It might be more palatable and that might just be with the way they've learned to sell themselves, but it really is coming from the same place," said Sylvia Albert, the director of voting and elections for the good-government group Common Cause.

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