The 2016 presidential election was the first presidential election in 50 years without the full protection of the Voting Rights Act. As a result, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said, voter suppression “had a dramatic impact on the outcome.”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nov. 4, 2015
Liz Accola Meunier, firstname.lastname@example.org, (202) 962-7254
Washington, DC – America Votes President Greg Speed released the following statement regarding the November 3rd state and local elections:
“The importance of state and local elections cannot be overstated. For the progressive community, last night saw many strategic victories in the states. While the media has focused on the Republican victory in deep-Red Kentucky, in America Votes states, there were a number of important progressive wins that mark the beginning of a multi-cycle road back to progressive power and reclaiming our democracy in the states.
“From Pennsylvania, to Ohio, to Jefferson County, Colorado – America Votes worked closely with allies to increase turnout and land important wins for progressives and voters. In Pennsylvania, the America Votes coalition delivered strong statewide turnout to win a 5-2 progressive majority on the state Supreme Court – a crucial player in the redistricting process in a state with some of the most unfair, GOP gerrymandered maps in the country. In Ohio, America Votes led efforts among our partners and successfully won Issue 1 to reform the redistricting process and hopefully make new districts more reflective of Ohio’s electorate. And in a critical local election of national importance, local public school advocates, educators and allies in Jefferson County, Colorado, turned out in massive numbers to oust a Koch-backed school board.
“America Votes will continue to be the leader of the progressive community’s long-term strategy to rebuild progressive power in the states from the ground up in 2016 and beyond.”
The progressive victories where America Votes and our allies worked together were strong. In Pennsylvania, initial counts show the three Democratic Supreme Court candidates defeated GOP candidates by 17 points (57-40) – a decisive statewide victory in a perennial battleground state. In Ohio, Issue 1 won overwhelmingly with over 70% of the vote. And in Jefferson County, turnout surpassed 40%, far above typical turnout for local races, as voters overwhelmingly recalled conservative school board members in the second largest school district in the state by 26-28% margins.
Progressives won numerous other races and ballot initiatives, such as the mayoral seat in Nashua, New Hampshire, where a Democrat was elected for the first time in over 20 years. In Las Cruces, New Mexico, progressives clinched city council seats and re-elected Democratic Mayor Ken Miyagishima to a rare third term, winning 52% of the vote despite oil and gas interests spending $80,000 against him. And in Maine, voters enacted Question 1, an important initiative that will restore the state’s clean elections post-Citizen’s United.
America Votes is the coordination hub of the progressive community. We lead collaborative efforts among a diverse coalition of over 400 state and national partner organizations to advance progressive policies, win elections, and protect every American’s right to vote. Our organization works nationally and in more than 20 states to provide a range of services to our partners, including strategic planning, advocacy and electoral campaign coordination, data tools and targeting services, and on-the-ground leadership in key states. For more information about America Votes, visit our website at www.americavotes.org.
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