FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
October 8, 2010
Kaitlin Sopoci-Belknap, (707) 362-0626, firstname.lastname@example.org
DEMOCRACY UNLIMITED RELEASES CANDIDATE SURVEY RESULTS
Majority of Local Candidates for Office Support Instant Runoff Voting, Publicly Funded Elections and Challenging the Doctrine of Corporate Personhood
EUREKA – Democracy Unlimited, a local community organization dedicated to local grassroots democracy,
released the results of a survey of local candidates seeking office in the November election today.
“We surveyed the candidates on election reform and local democracy issues that our membership and the general public of Humboldt County are talking about,” said Kaitlin Sopoci-Belknap, Executive Director of Democracy Unlimited.
Democracy Unlimited is a leader of a broad national coalition that is calling for a Constitutional Amendment to abolish Corporate Personhood, the legal doctrine that grants corporations many of the same rights as citizens. The “Move to Amend” coalition formed in response to a January Supreme Court ruling that expanded the rights of corporations and allowed for unlimited corporate spending in federal elections.
“Local communities are responding to threats to their ability to meaningfully regulate corporate influence over our elections, worker’s rights, the environment, our local businesses, and quality of life,” said Sopoci-Belknap. “Corporate power is a real threat to democracy, and the American people know it. It is our elected official’s responsibility to be educated about these issues and take a clear position that lets the voters know where they stand.”
The survey also asked questions about election reform measures that are used in other countries and that are gaining popularity in the United States. In San Francisco and Oakland, voters now use “Ranked Choice Voting,” a system that allows voters to mark candidates in order of preference. RCV is considered mathematically superior to First Past The Post in single-person elections as it eliminates vote splitting, It also eliminates the need for run-off elections and ensures that winning candidates cannot win by plurality.
“Voting reforms are necessary to make our elections more democratic and fair,” said Sopoci-Belknap. “Ranked Choice Voting and Publicly Funded Elections are effective tools to do just that. Our elected officials need to show leadership and work to bring about these reforms in Humboldt County.”
“We hope our survey helps voters as they’re choosing how to vote on November 2. We appreciate all the candidates who took the time to respond,” stated Sopoci-Belknap.
Complete responses of Democracy Unlimited’s candidate survey can be seen at: http://www.duhc.org/page/november-2010-candidate-survey