What We’re Fighting For

If we want to make progress on the critical issues facing our country, from health care and climate change to economic equality, immigration, and gun control, then we must fix our broken political system first. That’s why we’re working to strengthen our democracy at the state and federal level by increasing voter participation, restoring voting rights, and reducing the influence of big money in politics.

Fighting for Campaign Finance Reform at the State and Local Level

In 2010, the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision paved the way for unrestricted outside spending in our elections and cemented corporate dominance over American politics. Political spending is now fueled by a small, wealthy elite. Since 2010, Super PACS — independent political action committees that can raise unlimited funds from corporations — have spent more than $4.5 billion dollars to influence election outcomes, a billion of which came from just 11 individuals. 

Overturning Citizens United at the federal level or in the Supreme Court will be a long, uphill battle, but there is a real opportunity to combat outsized corporate influence in politics in the short-term at the state and local level. Cities like New York, Seattle, and Berkeley have passed innovative, crucial reforms that boost the power of small donations and incentivize candidates to be accountable to regular voters, not just the uber wealthy. These victories can serve as a model for campaign finance reforms in other cities and states as well. 

Last year, Stand Up America helped pass crucial campaign finance reform in New York — and we’re continuing the fight for reforms that empowers working families. Read more about recent wins at the state and local level:

RESTORING THE VOTING RIGHTS ACT

We’re part of the coalition organizing in support of The Voting Rights Advancement Act (HR4), a bill recently introduced by House Democrats that would restore the 1965 Voting Rights Act and serve as a safeguard against state-level voter suppression. HR4 would counteract the rise in voter discrimination in the wake of the devastating Shelby County v. Holder Supreme Court ruling.

In December 2019, HR4 successfully passed in the House of Representatives and it will now move to the Senate for a vote. Read more about the bill and how to support this fight:


Our Past Work

The Fight for Secure Elections

Since the 2016 presidential election, multiple reports confirmed that Russia hacked our election systems in all 50 states. To safeguard our democracy, states needed federal funding to prevent cyberattacks from hostile foreign actors — but the funding was stalled for months in the Senate. To help pass this funding, the Stand Up America community made over 120,000 calls, wrote letters to the editor, visited lawmakers’ offices, and sent thousands of emails and tweets, urging elected officials to prioritize this funding. And our campaign succeeded: In December 2019, the House and the Senate came together and allocated $425 million in election security funding. Read more here.

Campaign Finance Reform in NY State

The Stand Up America community was one of the loudest voices demanding that the New York State Legislature pass bold campaign finance reform. We sent 2,500+ emails to the commission tasked with fixing New York state’s campaign finance laws and nearly 200 letters to the editors of newspapers across New York State. In December 2019, the commission released its final report. Despite some drawbacks, the commission’s binding recommendations will significantly lower contribution limits and implement a robust public matching system for small-dollar donations. Read more here. 

Campaign Finance Reform in New Mexico

Stand Up America volunteers texted over 40,000 voters in New Mexico urging them to vote for an innovative ballot measure call Burque Bucks, which would have given Albuquerque voters democracy dollars they could donate to the municipal candidate of their choice. While the measure was narrowly defeated, it gained national attention and could serve as a model for other states and cities looking to give working families a louder voice in local elections.

SUPPORTING HR1: THE FOR THE PEOPLE ACT

At the beginning of 2019, Stand Up America organized in support of HR1 — a sweeping reform package of critical campaign finance, ethics, and voting rights reforms that passed in the House of Representatives. Unfortunately, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans are now blocking this critical bill.

Next Fight

Standing Up to Corruption

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Demand Congress Fund Vote-By-Mail

The COVID-19 pandemic poses an enormous threat to our democracy. We need Congress to allocate $4 billion now to expand vote-by-mail, early voting, and online voter registration. Call your senator now:

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