Take Corporate Action Now

Last updated on September 23, 2021

Participate in private advocacy around federal and state legislation.

Help maintain bipartisan support for this issue that has always transcended party and must again with this legislation.

Proactively steward accurate information.

  • Dispel disinformation (intentionally false) and misinformation (false regardless of intention) regarding the 2020 election and the democratic process of voting, generally—particularly among your employees and stakeholders who rely on your organization for trustworthy information.
  • Ensure your Government Affairs, Head of DEI/Human Resources, or another member of your senior leadership team understands the voting rights landscape by participating in regular corporate briefings.
  • Consider planning a call with lawyers from the Brennan Center for Justice to understand legislative changes and policy implications.
  • Declare publicly that new business endeavors will take into account local voting policies when determining growth opportunities.
  • Define your advocacy strategy for lobbying on the hill with the help of Black Economic Alliance.
  • Work with Leadership Now Project to understand state-specific advocacy actions.

Participate in public advocacy for comprehensive federal voting rights legislation.

  • Issue a press release stating that our democracy is in peril and federal legislation is the only way forward. Reject partisanship in our democratic process.
  • Join business coalitions such as Civic Alliance, Black Economic Alliance, Leadership Now Project, Business for America, and CEO Action for Racial Equity.
  • If you have not already joined the over 225 signatories, please sign the Business for Voting Rights letter to Congress in support of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.
  • If you have not already joined the over 90 signatories, please sign the pledge to support the Freedom to Vote Act at www.freedomtovoteact.org.
  • Leverage your business assets to support the freedom to vote. For example, if you’re a media company, produce a PSA (i.e. the CW). If you’re a law firm, commit pro bono resources to help people navigate difficult registration environments.

Talking points

  • The Freedom to Vote Act improves access to the ballot for Americans, advances commonsense election integrity reforms, and protects our democracy from emerging threats. Importantly, this proposal reflects feedback from state and local election officials to ensure that the people responsible for implementing these reforms are able to do so effectively. This bill also elevates the voices of American voters by ending partisan gerrymandering and rooting out the undue influence of special interest money in our politics.
  • No matter where we live or what our background, Americans want fair elections, where we all have the freedom to vote and make our voices heard on important issues such as providing affordable health care, creating good jobs, and ensuring quality education.
  • The democracy reforms in Freedom to Vote Act are drawn from bills that have long had bipartisan political support. A majority of people across the political spectrum support the bill.
  • A poll conducted by ALG Research found that majorities of Democratic, Republican, and Independent voters support the elements of the Freedom to Vote Act. The poll found that by a 53-point margin, voters support (72% support/19% oppose) policies included in the Freedom to Vote Act, including 95% of Democrats, 71% of Independents, and 55% of Republicans.

Bill Summary

Voter Access & Election Administration

This section advances voter access by implementing reliable state best practices for voter registration and election administration to ensure all Americans can easily exercise their freedom to vote regardless of where they live. Provisions include things like:

  • Automatic Voter Registration and Online Voter Registration: Enacts an automatic voter registration system for each state through the state’s motor vehicle agency and ensures voters in all states have access to online voter registration.
  • Election Day Holiday: Makes Election Day a public holiday.
  • Uniform Early Voting: Ensures voters have access to at least 15 consecutive days of early voting for federal elections, including two weekends, while accommodating small election jurisdictions and vote-by-mail jurisdictions.
  • Same Day Voter Registration: Ensures every state offers same day registration at a limited number of locations for the 2022 elections and at all polling locations by 2024, allowing election officials, especially in rural areas, time to implement the new requirements.
  • Federal Minimum Standards on Vote by Mail and Drop Boxes: Ensures all voters can request a mail-in ballot, improves the delivery of election mail, and puts in place minimum standards to ensure drop boxes are available and accessible to all voters.
  • Voting Rights Restoration for Returning Citizens: Restores the right to vote in federal elections for people who have served their time for felony convictions after they are released from prison.
  • Expanded Voting Access Protections for the Disabled, Native Americans, Military, Overseas Voters, and Underserved Communities: Includes targeted protections to promote accessible voting to communities facing unique challenges.

Election Integrity

This section includes measures to promote confidence in elections, stop partisan election subversion, and protect against election interference, both foreign and domestic. Provisions include things like:

  • Preventing State Election Subversion: Establishes federal protections to insulate nonpartisan state and local officials who administer federal elections from undue partisan interference or control.
  • Protection of Election Records, Election Infrastructure, and Ballot Tabulation: Strengthens protections for federal election records and election infrastructure in order to protect the integrity and security of ballots and voting systems.
  • Voter-Verified Paper Ballots, Reliable Audits, and Voting System Upgrades: Requires states to use voting systems that use paper ballots that can be verified by voters and to implement reliable post-election audits. Also provides grants for states to purchase new and more secure voting systems and make cybersecurity improvements.
  • Comprehensive Voting System Security Protections: Puts in place election vendor cybersecurity standards, including standards for manufacturing and assembling voting machines, among other key security measures.
  • Establishing Duty to Report Foreign Election Interference: Creates a reporting requirement for federal campaigns to disclose certain foreign contacts.

Civic Participation and Empowerment

This section prevents partisan manipulation of the redistricting process, establishes uniform disclosure standards for money in politics, and empowers states to make critical investments in their election systems. Provisions include things like:

  • Non-Partisan Redistricting Reform and Banning Partisan Gerrymandering: Requires states to abide by specific criteria for congressional redistricting and makes judicial remedies available for states’ failure to comply. Allows states to choose how to develop redistricting plans, including the option of having an independent redistricting commission.
  • Combatting Secret Money and Election Interference: Requires super PACs, 501(c)(4) groups, and other organizations spending money in elections to disclose donors and shuts down the use of transfers between organizations to cloak the identity of contributors. Ensures that political ads sold online have the same transparency and disclosure requirements as ads sold on TV, radio, and satellite.
  • Stopping Illicit Super PAC Coordination: Creates “coordinated spender” category to ensure single-candidate super PACs do not operate as arms of campaigns.
Bill Summary Provided by Declaration for American Democracy