Contact: Jeanne Massey, FairVote Minnesota Executive Director, jeanne.massey@fairvotemn.org, 612-850-6897

St. Paul (January 28, 2021) — We are at a perilous time in our democracy, and there are growing calls to fortify it against growing threats. FairVote Minnesota (“FVMN”), a leading election reform organization in Minnesota, today announced a virtual conversation with award-winning political scientist and author Lee Drutman and U.S. Representative Angie Craig, a leading advocate of government reform and cosponsor of H.R. 1 in Congress. These two national leaders will join State Representative Cedrick Frazier, Vice Chair of the Public Safety and Criminal Justice Reform Committee, to discuss how we can strengthen our democracy through reform.

FVMN will launch the Zoom event on Sunday, January 31 from 4:00-5:00pm. All who want to join are welcome and can register at fairvotemn.org/rsvp.

January 6 will forever be a stain on American democracy. The events of January 6 and the lies and misinformation leading up to it exposed the fragility of our democracy, and it is incumbent on all of us to take bold action to strengthen it and safeguard it against extremism. Democracy reform for our racially diverse nation must be the number one priority of elected officials at all levels of government.

Craig and Drutman will discuss the urgency of reform and outline those that are achievable and well-designed to bolster our democracy against polarization and extremism like H.R. 1 in Congress and Ranked Choice Voting. Frazier will moderate the discussion as well as highlight democracy reform efforts in the Minnesota House, including H.F. 89 which would advance Ranked Choice Voting statewide in Minnesota as well as provide the option for local jurisdictions to use RCV if they wish.

Drutman sees Ranked Choice Voting as a top reform to address our growing political divide. “Many democracy scholars see ranked-choice voting as bridging political gaps in divided societies,” he wrote in a recent Washington Post piece. “The kinds of vote-pooling that ranked-choice voting encourages builds electoral coalitions across competing groups and encourages candidates to seek broader support beyond their most loyal supporters.”

Craig is making reform a priority in the 117th Congress and is a strong supporter of Ranked Choice Voting for state and federal elections, having experienced the flaws of the current system in her congressional race firsthand. It was widely reported that third party candidates were recruited to run in her race in order to act as “spoilers” and siphon votes away from her at the ballot box. Ranked Choice Voting would prevent this manipulation of the system and such undemocratic outcomes.

“I look forward to moderating this discussion between Dr. Drutman, a national democracy reform scholar and Rep. Craig, one of Minnesota’s leading reform advocates in Congress, about how we can at the national, state and local level fortify our democracy through reform – which is needed now more than ever,” stated Rep. Frazier.

Please contact FairVote Minnesota’s Executive Director Jeanne Massey for more information about Ranked Choice Voting and our other electoral reform efforts in Minnesota.

Media are welcome and should email kristen@fairvotemn.org to receive the Zoom link.

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