The Coronavirus Pandemic of 2020 has made it more clear than ever that the United States needs to move away from divisive party politics and emerge from this crisis with a spirit of national unity and resolve. That needs to begin with our central policy-making body – the US Congress.
Here are a collection of organizations that are working every day to mitigate the toxic effect of partisanship in creating public policy:
- Braver (nee Better) Angels – This group advocates for understanding that there are always going to be different positions in political decisions but working more effectively across those differences.
- No Labels – An organization that eschews liberal, conservative, republican and democrat and advocates for problem solving.
- Fairvote – This organization is pushing for the adoption of Ranked Choice Voting, a vote-counting methodology that takes into account how voters would rank all the candidates, rather than just winner-take-all, resulting in winners that better represent a majority of voters
- When We All Vote – An organization that is working to make sure that everyone has a chance and the encouragement to vote safely, particularly as online voter registration and online voting is challenged by those who would like to suppress the vote.
- The Gerrymandering Project – This site, by the folks at FiveThirtyEight, seems to have been put on hold but offers a really clear look at how unfair Gerrymandering is and how damaging it is to the prospect of a truly representative government.
Who’s my Representative?
The folks at Govtrack make it really easy to get the answer to this question. Follow this link, enter your address and you are off and running. You will get information on both the two senators in your state and importantly, your representative in the House of Representatives.
Take note of the Congressional District number you live in. Why does it matter? Because in some states the other people in your district may live in other communities in your state while the people living across town may be in a different district. You can’t hold representatives accountable if you don’t know who they are representing.
What’s in the News?
Setting up a news alert so you can see what your representative is saying and doing is also easy. Head to Google News, type in the name of your representative (use quotes like this “Peter Welch”) in the search box, press search and you get the latest news stories that include your representative. Once you get the results you can click on the link to “follow” this topic and you will get updates when new stories are published.