Activists Demand NBC Ask Candidates About Democracy Reform


Today, a coalition of democracy reform organizations delivered a letter to NBC and the moderators of the first Democratic presidential primary debate demanding that candidates be asked about their plans to fix our democracy.

See Petition Here:

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The coalition letter, organized by Equal Citizens—a pro-democracy organization founded by Harvard Law Professor Lawrence Lessig—is the most recent component of the POTUS 1 campaign to push presidential candidates to commit to fixing democracy first. The signatories include RepresentUS, the Center for American Progress, Public Citizen, and Communication Workers of America, among others. These organizations are united in their belief that pressing candidates to explain how they will solve our democratic crisis is a critical step towards an engaging and productive Democratic Primary.

"POTUS 1" is styled after the House of Representatives historica H.R. 1, which passed in the House this year, and represented the most ambitious reform package passed by the House since the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The aim of the POTUS 1 campaign is to get candidates to identify what fundamental reform for them is, and to get them to commit to making that reform their first priority.

“Our goal is simple,” Equal Citizens founder Lessig explained. “Push the candidates to make fixing our democracy their first priority in office. That’s not the most important issue. But it is the first issue—that change that must happen if anything else sensible is going to happen.”

This effort aligns with the sentiment of the American people. A poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation found that “corruption in Washington, DC” to be the number one issue for Americans in 2018.

Equal Citizens’ Executive Director Jason Harrow stressed the public desire for reform, noting: “Huge majorities of voters recognize that Washington is fundamentally broken because of the way politicians are forced to raise huge sums of money from special interests and wealthy donors. The debate moderators must recognize this and press the candidates to describe what they would do to fix the way Washington works so that they can actually turn their policy goals into the law of the land.”

In the coming week, Equal Citizens will launch a digital campaign asking voters to record the questions they would like to see the debate moderators ask about democracy reform.

About Equal Citizens

EqualCitizens.US is a non-profit, founded by Lawrence Lessig, that is committed to achieving political equality within the United States