Preview of Tonight's Debate; How to Make U.S. Elections More Fair

10/22/12 Robert Lorei
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Good morning, welcome to Radioactivity…. I’m Rob Lorei. Coming up today we’ll talk about voting. Why are so many Congressional and legislative races uncompetitive. And how could we reform the voting process to give the public more opportunity to vote their conscience? Later we’ll talk with a press secretary to President Obama’s about tonight’s foreign policy debate…..But first two listener comments about last Friday’s Radioactivity – during the open phones segment we were discussing

First up we'll talk about tonight's last of three presidential candidates debates. Joing us right now is Jen Psaki who is a traveling press secretary for President Obama.


Next our Our guest is Rob Richie, executive director of FairVote, which has just released a pair of reports on "the roots of lack of competition in congressional races and a roadmap for reform."

Among the findings" "* "Monopoly Politics 2012": "Provides insight into the root cause of the lack of competition in House races and the decline of the center in Congress. This root cause is not any dramatic shifts in district partisanship, but rather the combination of winner-take-all voting rules and reduced ticket-splitting by voters. The overwhelming majority of districts are won by the party that has a partisan edge in those districts -- far more than in recent decades."

  • "Fair Voting 2012": Provides a map for each state with current partisan districting and FairVotes proposals to increase voter choice by creating competitive, more representative districts, including by using proportional representation. FairVote also has reform proposals to avoid "vote-splitting" when third party candidates run. Richie pointed to the "U.S. Senate race in Maine -- where there is growing pressure on the Democrat to drop out to avoid splitting the vote of the frontrunner, independent Angus King, as well as reactions to the presidential campaigns of Gary Johnson, Virgil Goode, Jill Stein and Rocky Anderson. These highlight the need for instant runoff voting where people get to rate candidates 1, 2, 3 rather than vote for their 'lesser evil.'"


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