Voting rights


Photo: Denise Cross Photography/Flickr

The Science of Voting Rights + An Interview with Matt Dunlap

, Kendall Science Fellow

When Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap agreed to serve on President Trump’s “Election Integrity” commission, election scholars, myself included, roundly criticized him for legitimizing a nakedly partisan attempt to indulge the President’s fantasies about why he failed to win the popular vote. Mr. Dunlap’s pursuit of transparency is a crucial example of how a commitment to science-based policy and integrity can protect citizens from government agencies betraying the public interest. In early February, I sat down with Dunlap for an extended interview. We discussed his decision to serve, his experience as a member of the Commission, and the events that led to his lawsuit against the Commission. Read more >

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Pennsylvania’s New Congressional Map is Fair, But Reveals Fundamental Tradeoffs in Institutional Choice

, Kendall Science Fellow

Earlier this week, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court released its much-awaited Congressional redistricting plan to replace a 2012 Republican-drawn plan which it recently ruled to be an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander. The new plan is unquestionably more fair, ensuring at least two more seats for Democratic voters who currently hold only 5 of Pennsylvania’s 18 seats, despite composing about half of the statewide electorate. However, the new plan, and others proposed over the last week, reveal a fundamental limitation of our electoral system that should concern not just the Democratic Party, but anyone concerned about political equality. Read more >

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Science and the Law: Two Pillars of Truth Intersect at Political Boundaries

, Kendall Science Fellow

2018 is promising to be far more consequential than your average midterm election year. A number of landmark Supreme Court and state court decisions could literally transform parts of the country’s political landscape.  Read more >

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Flickr/Michael Fleshman

Standing Ground: The State of Voting Rights in Year One of the Trump Administration

, Kendall Science Fellow

On January 20th, 2017, Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of these United States.  By the time the president-elect had actually taken office, he had already put into motion his intent to see through a radical transformation of the nation’s electoral laws.  Mr. Trump’s nomination of Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions as Attorney General, his collaboration with Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach to establish an “electoral integrity” commission, and his nomination of a series of controversial judicial appointees soon after inauguration, all reflected an extension of his campaign’s attacks on the integrity of U.S. elections.

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Michael Fleshman
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The Science of Sovereignty: Two Cases Show How the Future of Voting Rights Depends on the Integrity of Data

, Kendall Science Fellow

This week, two major court cases concerning the right to an equal and effective vote revealed how crucial scientific integrity in the courts is going to be if voting rights are to be secured for all Americans. Read more >

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