For Immediate Release


Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167

Empowering Voter Choice: * Killing the Congressional Gerrymander * Instant Runoff Voting

Richie is executive director of FairVote, which has just released a pair of reports on “the roots of lack of competition in congressional races and a roadmap for reform.”

* “Monopoly Politics 2012″: “Provides insight into the root cause of the lack of competition in House races and the decline of the center in Congress. This root cause is not any dramatic shifts in district partisanship, but rather the combination of winner-take-all voting rules and reduced ticket-splitting by voters. The overwhelming majority of districts are won by the party that has a partisan edge in those districts — far more than in recent decades.”

* “Fair Voting 2012″: Provides a map for each state with current partisan districting and FairVotes proposals to increase voter choice by creating competitive, more representative districts, including by using proportional representation.

FairVote also has reform proposals to avoid “vote-splitting” when third party candidates run. Richie pointed to the “U.S. Senate race in Maine — where there is growing pressure on the Democrat to drop out to avoid splitting the vote of the frontrunner, independent Angus King, as well as reactions to the presidential campaigns of Gary Johnson, Virgil Goode, Jill Stein and Rocky Anderson. These highlight the need for instant runoff voting where people get to rate candidates 1, 2, 3 rather than vote for their ‘lesser evil.’

“The silver lining about the 40 ‘safe’ states in the presidential race is the freedom it provides to vote your conscience in those states. That could be true for all of us in every election with instant runoff voting.”


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