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[ps2id id=’home’]Every Hawaii voter deserves to be heard![/ps2id]
Democracy works best when everyone participates and all voices are heard through a vote of the people. As the state with the lowest voter turnout in the country, we must look for ways to make our elections more accessible, efficient, and convenient for everyone. Join us as we work to reduce barriers to voting and bring our elections into the 21st century.
Modern Elections Hawaii is a statewide coalition of grassroots groups, established organizations, and everyday citizens fighting to modernize Hawaii’s elections. Our goal is to pass simple solutions to improve our elections and reduce barriers to voting.
Here’s the problem:
Just 43% of eligible Hawaii voters cast ballots in 2016, giving our state the lowest turnout in the nation for the fifth presidential election in a row.
There is a growing pro-democracy movement, from communities and states across the country, reacting to unprecedented threats we the people face with respect to self-governance. We must work together, Democrats, Republicans, small parties and independents to restore balance to our democracy and put a check on the wealthy special interests trying to change the rules and write the voice of the people out of our democracy.
We must remind them the Constitution says the people ARE the power, and the best way to do that is by reducing barriers to participation and increasing voter turnout.
[ps2id id=’agenda’]Our Agenda[/ps2id]
We have a simple four-point-plan to give Hawaii voters the 21st century democracy we deserve.
Vote By Mail
Under Vote By Mail (VBM) a ballot is mailed to every registered voter, no request or application is necessary. Voters are then able to return their ballot via mail or at a drop-off location; or cast their vote in person at early voting centers or service centers on Election Day.
- Provides more flexibility and creates more opportunities for people to participate and vote.
- Will save the state money. The Hawaii State Office of Elections estimates approximately $800 thousand would be saved in each election cycle by converting to Voting by Mail.
- Would alleviate pressure on poll sites and workers, and save time on Election Day.
Automatic Voter Registration
Automatic Voter Registration (AVR) would automatically register eligible citizens who apply for/renew their Hawaii Drivers’ License/State ID, unless they choose to opt out. Information would be electronically transferred to election officials, ensuring the registration process convenient, accurate, and secure.
- Would increase the security of our elections by the updating voter rolls in real time, and using an encrypted system to transfer data rather than paper forms.
- Is efficient, which will lead to cost savings. It costs almost 30 times more to process a paper application versus an electronic one.
- Helps ensure that voting isn’t needlessly difficult for working and military families who move frequently, as well as homebound seniors, students, and voters in rural areas.
Ranked Choice Voting
Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) allows voters to rank candidates in the order of their choice. Candidates do best when they attract a strong core of first-choice support while also reaching out for second and third choices. RCV helps elect a candidate that better reflects the support of a majority of voters.
- Promotes fairness. Results are grounded in majority rule. This means the winner is more representative.
- Encourages civil elections. Candidates have more incentives to debate the issues.
- Eliminates the spoiler effect. Voting for a candidate in third place or lower does not “split the vote” for the majority.
Citizen Funded Elections
There are several types of Citizen Funded Elections, but all share the common goal of offsetting the big money flood in elections with small-donor contributions. In one popular version, candidates running for elective office are awarded a competitive amount of money by the state to run a competitive campaign. In order to qualify for this program, the candidate must raise small amounts of money, which the state will then match. Candidates agree to follow certain restrictions and spending limits.
- Allows legislators to spend more time interacting with constituents and less time fundraising.
- Increases the number of donors. Lobbyists influence begins to decline with public financing.
- Ensures more regular people are able to run for office.
[ps2id id=’take-action’]Take Action![/ps2id]
Spread The Word
Help modernize elections in Hawaii by spreading the word about this campaign!
We can make a difference
When ordinary people like us come together to demand change, the results can be extraordinary.
Send A Message
Write a letter to your Hawaii state lawmakers urging them to enact the Modern Elections Hawaii reform package!
Making A Difference
Thanks to your support, Same Day Voter Registration will be available statewide in 2018
Make A Call
Here are some resources to help spread the word about Modern Elections Hawaii!
FAQsPhone scriptSample letter to FriendsSample letter to LawmakersHost an Action Party GuideCommunicating with LawmakersLegislative Process CheatsheetsHow to TestifyTips on writing an Op-Ed
Every vote counts!
In 2010, the candidate who became Honolulu Council chairman won by fewer than 50 votes.