Statement of Common Cause President Karen Hobert Flynn
The “For the People Act” offers common sense solutions to problems Americans are demanding that their elected officials solve. These pro-democracy reforms are tested and proven to be effective on the state and local level where citizens, tired of waiting for Washington to act, worked to enact these reforms. Citizen action has moved elected officials in many states and municipalities and citizens have also taken matters into their own hands and passed ballot initiatives. As we outlined in our Democracy on the Ballot report, more than 90% of the pro-democracy reform initiatives passed in each of the last two cycles.
Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) and his 46 colleagues who cosponsored the bill are to be commended for introducing this sweeping set of democracy reforms which serves as the companion bill to H.R. 1 which was passed by the House earlier this month.
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) move to pre-emptively block a vote on this companion bill reveals once again that he is firmly entrenched with deep-pocketed special interests in Washington and willing to ignore the will of the people.
The bill contains the most sweeping set of pro-democracy reforms since those passed in the wake of the Watergate scandals. It includes reforms restore the rule of law, empower the voices of all Americans, curb abusive partisan gerrymandering, and strengthen the right to vote for every eligible American.
The growing commitment to press reform in the incoming Congress is reflected in Common Cause’s Our Democracy 2018 report. The record response rate from campaigns in which we asked then-candidates to go on the record with their positions on 18 key democracy reforms reflects the momentum building in Washington to move pro-democracy reforms. The responses from more than 370 candidates were heartening and reflective of a new Congress prepared to follow the will of the people.
To view Common Cause’s “Our Democracy 2018” responses from congressional candidates, click here.
To view the “Democracy on the Ballot” report, click here.