tv Washington Journal Krist Novoselic and Rob Richie Discuss Election Reform... CSPAN June 26, 2017 5:40pm-6:12pm EDT
>> "washington journal" continues. host: discussion on election reform efforts with two members representing the group fairvote.org. by krist novoselic. rob richie also joining us. coming.or tell us about fair vote for those who don't know. it? is guest: fair vote has been around 25 years. this month, is our 25th anniversary. we started in ohio, which helps show that we believe that you in make a lot of difference reform in the cities and states. the d.c. arean and maryland. that gives voters greater stronger voice and a democracy that works for all americans. that's our mantra. believe that to do that, we really need to look at the
hydraulics of our electoral process. there are changes that can open up politics to voters in a very different way. host: we hear a will the about on thisl reform program. something that your group is pushing on rank choice voting. also this idea of legislation in congress. explain what you're after? guest: we're after making we electchange to how representatives in the united states house. about giving voters more voices, more choices and more power. it includes independent redistricting commission. what's really unique about it is that we proposed congress tobers to multimember districts. wins the top vote getter but also the second maybe third can win.e
host: that's how rank choice voting works. differ fromt plurality? proportional. there will be two republican and one democrat or two democrat and one republican. there's space for independents and third parties. voices andmore choic choices. host: some argue that process describing is a complicated one. what do you think when you hear that? it doing as far as getting people elected? started in 1992 our founding chair was john anderson. as an for president independent. ralph naderrot and and others put in that box saying, you're just a spoiler. it's a way to say, that shouldn't happen. should be able to participate and voters should be able to you.der able toificed being choose lesser of two evils.
open up the ballot. they're ready to do it. here's my first choice but and's my second choice third choice. that's not complicated. it's what we really think about things and we do it all the time. we rank our ice cream flavors or whatever. what's a way to do called instant -- you don't have vote splitting. if you apply fair representation act, which we're excited being introduced today, in the multimember districts where you have more than one winner, you don't actually need 50% to win, do when you'reou electricking one person, like president. lower that share to whatever is proportionate to number of seats. have five seats it will take a fifth of the vote. this is the amazing thing. up every single corner, every single state meaningful and participation and representation. one party would not sweep all
the seats anywhere. continue on with our conversation with our guest. if you want to call in and ask a questions of them about their and other matters of election reform. 202-748-8001,s for democrats 202-748-8000, 202-748-8002. mr. krist novoselic, are there states that use ranked choice voting? i know that maine is one. up. issues popped guest: maine hasn't used it yet. it's used in the local level area and twiny cities. on the state-- not level. host: why not? guest: we're getting there. advocating this for a while. gains traction. comprehensive reform takes time. crusaders. we're advocating this. argument tothere a be made this type of system
scale?est on a local guest: no, they use it internationally in a national election. it's not complicated. ed.ay it's sophisticat insiders and politicians and consultants, they go into a state. they'll divide the whole state and district. sophisticateded, technology to gerrymander districts to benefit themselves and parties. we're say, let's give voters that power. it's way more transparent in the back rooms. it's on are the election. the voters themselves decide who them.ents not the political insiders. add, it works well local level. it makes sense more and more the go.er you i think single biggest barrier we dealt with over the years, is key parts of the maine equation, we have antiquated voting equipment processes. when you bring a change, it sort
institutional just get implemented. the bigger you go, the more different equipment you're dealing with. the logistical issues. there's no technical barriers. regime that's difficult. that's getting better. that's a website run by a bunch election officials who are problem.g the we can look at ways to liberate voterses. your who's sponsoring legislation? guest: congressman don beyer from virginia. history.n interesting he represented virginia statewide. he had that history of trying to get votes everywhere. now he represents one district. the value recognized of reaching out and having a electorate. this point about the polarization we're in. a dragging issue for him. safe.are so
half congressional seats won by in 2016.tage points incumbents won. this is ther people's house. that means that the primaries voterserything and the that representatives have been more focused on the primary electorate. elections the general matters and that bigger the greater spectrum of people matter. hope is this will create to make the house works intended. which is to be that most of governmenth that leads. this approachut as compared to people might gerrymandering or redrawing districts? problem.is solves that our bill includes independent redistricting commission. however, instead of giving voters power a away to excision,
it's the voters himself, we have power to elect. i can be a rural democrat or i be a urban republican or an independent or third party. it's a game changer. host: democrats sponsoring this. you have support from republicans on this. guest: republicans at the local level and state level. audiotape house of representatives overwhelming a bill. we can find sort of these the 2016 during nomination process. lots of republican interest in this hugedle presidential field. democrats are looking ahead to 2020. handleu trying to choice, it makes since. this proposal is a new idea for lot of members. i think more people look at it, go to fair representation.com.
it's part of our website. there's a video that explains maps.nd lot of members will need to have that process. we certainly expect it to be party willhat both are support. guests to take your question. first up is chris from buffalo, democrats line. caller: i believe your guests that the states have been gerrymandered and i a case there might be going to the supreme court about that. if it comes out to where they're gerrymander, we hopefully will get a draw representative vote. i hope that would be the case. fair.ody would have a guest: i'll comment. case for thoseg who are concerned about gerrymandering. gerrymandering.
it's where one party really sticking it to the other party and getting unfair advantage in their seats won. lot ofeeing that in a states. my state of maryland is where democrats took it to republicans neighboring pennsylvania did if the other way -- did it the other way. it would be first such political gerrymander ruling. going to be decided or heard argument in the next session. it would focus on the problem way.tant it doesn't get to this core voter shoulds control their own representations. geographically sorted, no matter how you draw the lines, most of the conduct is just -- country is done. 12 states would have more than one seat, only one party represents it. it's not like there's any kind of packing or something. one party.just we're seeing a lot of that.
we think the core is to change all to open up elections. cry -- there'sot a lot of criteria. it's not just competition. competition, only criteria and you have urban districts, there would be not compact. there's so many democrats packed districts.ban they're surplussed voters. host: let's hear next from david. michigan, independent line. caller: good morning krist. i have two questions. after 2016 presidential election, candidate jill stein for ballot recount. she only had one percent of the vote. electronic era of ballot machine hacking the potential for ballot recount is increase. recounts are expensive. at each vote looked precinct and what they should be. second question is, years ago, you made some strong arguments reducing the use of
escalators. fair vote done a study they're number ofhe escalators contribute to election reform? guest: escalators are a good thing as they move forward. vote supports accountableand voting. if you have evidence of any kind call your, you can state attorney general, local and make a case.forcement guest: we done lot of look at recount. people can go do our website and see what happens and doesn't happen. is that actually congress not mandate a certain way that all state have to do recounts.al they set a regime in place just predictable. one the states can do, is to say it will cost to do a statewide recount before an election. do a recount, this is our timing and this is
the cost. made incisions can be nonpolitical way. when you wait until afterwards, everything gets highly charged. though what the potential implications of the change are. reallysomething where we could do better. we have a lot of different approaches to recounts. it's an accident waiting to happen. host: this is bill from pittsburgh, pennsylvania. ahead. caller: good morning. say aboutings to redistricting. long.ould take too multiple representation in a district. that is first of all, it's like a trophy to every person that shows up. are there.e they
secondly, it creates electoral chaos. governmental chaos. there's proportional elections. point to then united states house of representatives. minority factions drive the agenda. guest: bill you really need to look into the fair representation act. would check it out, you like it. voters. more voices to host: go ahead mr. bill. caller: i will finish my sentence regardless. groups gets five percent of the vote get to choose which they support and therefore outside influence. host: thank you bill. it.t: i'll answer i think that looking at the particulars of this proposal, lot ways not have winner take all elections.
the fair representation act establishes pretty high threshold what it takes to win. we don't create more seats. we just create bigger districts. fiveoklahoma, which has seats that are easily won by republicans or connecticut, five democrats.y won by would be statewide and it would take close to fifth of a vote to a eat. that's a pretty high bar and a lower bar. it's a lower bar that opens up politics to both major parties .ompeting they can hold the major parties accountable. see isu would really this diversification of the major party. you have a bigger tent of the much more fairly reflected reflected, manhattan democrats., rural you might get independent. it's not like a rigid party a the caller is worried about. i say about multimember districts. recently as the 1950's, 40
state have multimember districts. my state still has multimember districts. most cities have it. than onehaving more representative, it makes sense when you trying to be having only one person by definition will leave a lot of people out. outt: bill need to check the fair representation act. the israeli like elected through party proportional system. vote for a party and not the person. we have in the united states, we for the person, not the party. fair representation act allows voters to check both for the the party.not the thresholds are a lot higher. be 25% threshold to get elected. elects their national assembly at large.
hear two guests, krist novoselic fair vote here's the chair. here to talk about elections.on reform would it complicates matter. what about cost. state tocost more for run this type of election system? guest: it calls for appropriations to help states transition. doing voter education about a new system. it could kick in 202. transitionave this period. there could be a enough time to set up the system to make it work. brad let's hear next from in maine. on independent line. there.
inler: we almost -- we're between having a rank choice voting system now. because it's in the legislature process. it's basically a republican for it. it, democrats i think the thing that is to me is a majority. the important part -- that's the important part it. it takes the major to win the election. i'm surprised -- is it true no a majority has election? say for maine, it will be for governor and all the statewide including the senate and senate too.nd u.s. it's hard to believe there's no other state in the nation that has a majority election system. is that correct?
guest: couple parts to that. system, whatting it really does is maximize one.s help select if you elect multiple people, it get election.ple that's sort of way they connect. do have majority system hand states.of much for for primary election election.al georgia has majority system for governor. you have to win 50% or they have a runoff. runoff, this is the practical problems with runoffs. to achieve that objective but the turn out changes. but it's expensive. especially to the state, the candidate have to run twice. holiday season and so on. states have want to have major systems but have found technical
problems. rank choice voting in states like maine will be attractive. maine passed it by the way as a balloter measure with the second in ballot measure in maine history. court issued advisory opinion the uses for government in november, probably violate constitution under some -- something that's not in the federal constitution it's a issue. it's still in place for congress and primaries. sincenk it makes a lot of there. it is a political fight. you pass these ballot measures, they're saying, that's advice from the people and their ownst doing thing. hopefully they will uphold the people.the host: we have a viewer off twitter who asked a question, why we always looking to change a system that worked for a couple of hundred years? guest: the system isn't working now. united states is very stable
democracy in some ways. veryher ways, it's unstable. it's very polarized now. how we have this team blue and team red and everybody just running against other. it's also fractured along the divide.d rural i don't think we have enough urban republicans. we don't have enough rural democrats. which tend to be more moderate. the fairat representation act is working to fix. i think our system -- our voting broken.s just watch the news and see what's going on. polarized people are. guest: we have a whole history changing the system. the system has not been a single thing. is, is what america making our system better when it needs to get better. today is not what we in 1790's. the fact we done -- we need to
open to change. guest: we're not changing the united states constitution. we want to constitution. we want to repeal the 1967 a 50-year-old law that mandates single member system. host: in springfield, massachusetts. caller: hi. i have a couple things. one is, i wonder as far as how are put on provisional ballots and think voteing and also the voter roll, people being kicked roll.e voter guest: we want to give voters voices and solve gerrymandering once and for all.
he political insiders, consultants, the partisans have too much power when they make istricts, like masters of the universe, they choose who wins and loses. e're saying, hey, have the voters decide who wants, who they want to represent them. be a rural democrat, rural democrats, their voices are silent. ban republicans, give them a part of the conversation. host: from north carolina, barney, hello.ne, caller: yes. from north carolina and most equally shameless in manipulating any system that has type of discretion or possibility of the implementation. time that irv was tried
carolina, the voting -- the officials were able to actually mess that up. my question is, is there any constitution constitutional, federal or state impediment to electing the entire congressional delegation by calm cumulatively voting where every state would have 13 votes to spend any way he wanted spend? guest: voting is constitutional used in the voting acts ight of 1965, there is cumulative voting used in 1000 the school boards around united states, it's a great option, instead of putting eople in single-member districts, you can have modified
large, it's called and it is more sophisticated, but all that is on the front end of when the votes are back roomd not in the when lawyers, when you look at oting rights act, lawyers make districts and they make white districts make black and sometimes that works and sometimes there are problems with that. ou have an alternative with cumulative voting and with fair representation act. do is have to larger pool of voters elected elected.ey want it is fairg to that, representation voting, not principle.e all totally statutory. we are supporting voting because split vote h the problem, voter consist vote incere and don't have to know who is ahead or not, they vote their heart, which is a good
hing and results are reliable when electing multiple people. -- has connection to cumulative voting, they use that for illinois house of representatives for more than a century and there is members still around from when they used it. john porter, a republican house member, who was first elected to legislature, points system they have the and shrunk the size of legislature and got rid of the system in 1980, but again, you representation by politics in every district and chicago republicans, urban, democrats and it just worked. systems really can work. host: reform system, you can find out more about the effort making at the website fairvote.org, you have heard members of the group. rob richie and krist novoselic, group.f the you may recognize them as
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