The 2000 election brought to light a myriad of problems that exist in our country's election system. After more than a year and half of intensive debate, Congress responded with the passage of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) in 2002, legislation which I helped author. In passing this legislation, Congress made a commitment of more than $3 billion to states and local governments to give them the appropriate resources to make the necessary changes to their election administration and systems, as well as to improve voter education and accessibility for people with disabilities.
While great strides have been made to improve our elections, significant problems still persist. With recent Supreme Court decisions such as Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission, Shelby County v. Holder, and McCutcheon v. Federal Elections Commission, I fear our nation has begun to slide backwards in its march of progress. We must take steps to check the power of money in our elections and to ensure that the public’s interest is kept paramount.
Additionally, the United States' population has massively increased over the past century. During that time, many of our democratic institutions have not been updated. New ideas, such as increasing the size of the House of Representatives or changing the presidential primary system are worthy of study in order to improve voter representation, citizen voice, and access to elected officials. Additionally, elections officials need more equipment, more polling booths, and more trained poll workers to handle the increasing number of voters. I am committed to ensuring all Americans are afforded the opportunity to vote without intimidation, coercion, or undue burden.