Basic Briefing

The Fair Elections Debate

The debate focuses on how to make voting as fair as possible. Is voting fraud an issue in the US? What is the best way to protect voter integrity without making it unreasonably difficult for certain people to vote? Are Voter ID Laws an example of voter protection or voter suppression?

Official Democratic position

The Democratic Party opposes voter ID laws and other laws that make it more difficult to vote. “Democrats know that voter identification laws can disproportionately burden young voters, people of color, low-income families, people with disabilities, and the elderly, and we refuse to allow the use of political pretexts to disenfranchise American Citizens."

Official Republican position

The Republican Party supports Voter ID laws, and laws that require proof of citizenship in order to register to vote. The party thinks this is necessary “…to protect our electoral system against a significant and growing form of voter fraud.” The Party also opposes all-mail elections.

Institutional framework

At the federal level, the Election Assistance Commission is responsible for creating voting guidelines and certifying voting systems under the Help Americans Vote Act. The Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice investigates voting complaints about possible violations to federal voting rights laws.

At the state level, each Secretary of State’s office is in charge of investigating voting complaints. There are also independent groups like the Election Protection Hotline that deal with complaints such as voter intimidation, voter challenges, and misinformation.

Most Vocal on Fair Elections

These are the candidates who focus on this issue the most, with the most liberal on this issue on the left and the most conservative on this issue on the right. Click on the circles to see more information.

Gregg Harper | Candidate for 3rd Congressional District, primary (2018) in Mississippi (MS) | Crowdpac Alan Grayson | 9th Congressional District (2014) in Florida (FL) | Crowdpac Zoe Lofgren | Candidate for 19th Congressional District, primary (2018) in California (CA) | Crowdpac Ted Cruz | Candidate for US Senate, primary (2018) in Texas (TX) | Crowdpac Kevin McCarthy | Candidate for 23rd Congressional District, primary (2018) in California (CA) | Crowdpac Reid Ribble | 8th Congressional District (2014) in Wisconsin (WI) | Crowdpac Denny Heck | Candidate for 10th Congressional District, primary (2018) in Washington (WA) | Crowdpac Michael Capuano | Candidate for 7th Congressional District, primary (2018) in Massachusetts (MA) | Crowdpac David Price | Candidate for 4th Congressional District, primary (2018) in North Carolina (NC) | Crowdpac Beto O'Rourke | Candidate for US Senate, primary (2018) in Texas (TX) | Crowdpac

The Spectrum on Fair Elections

These are the candidates who are most liberal, most conservative, and most moderate on this specific issue. Click on each candidate to see more information.

Relevant Committees


American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) - Founded in 1920 "to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties that the Constitution guarantees"

True the Vote - An initiative developed by citizens for citizens to inspire and equip volunteers for involvement at every stage of America’s electoral process