Republicans in Richmond have been systematically disempowering Virginia voters for years. From passing unnecessary voter ID laws to gerrymandering our congressional districts beyond reason or recognition, they’ve proven time and time again that their priority isn’t expanding democracy — it’s suppressing the voices of their opposition.
We should be making it easier to vote — not harder. And we should be making government more transparent — not more convoluted. That’s why Ralph is introducing the Virginia Votes plan to expand voting access in Virginia and increase government transparency. Here’s how it works:
Expanding voting rights
First and foremost, Ralph will repeal the unnecessary and restrictive voter ID law to expand access to the ballot box, not restrict it.
Voting should be convenient, but for lots of folks — those working shift work or multiple jobs, caretakers, military servicemembers — there are too many obstacles to get to the polls on Election Day or to register to vote. To address this, Ralph will fight to pass same-day voter registration, and no-excuse early voting so you can cast a ballot before Election Day, and he will declare Election Day a holiday for state workers.
Ralph will continue Governor McAuliffe’s leadership on voting rights restoration because he knows that Virginians who have paid their debts to society and served their sentences should have the right to vote — period. He’ll also expand student voting by working with localities, colleges and universities to ensure every qualified student has access to a polling place.
Finally, Ralph will support Virginia signing the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact to award all the commonwealth’s electoral votes to whichever presidential candidate wins the overall popular vote in the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Increasing government transparency
It’s not enough to simply expand the vote, however — folks need to know who they’re voting for. That’s why we need to increase transparency in Richmond. Ralph has been a longtime champion of ending gerrymandering, which disproportionately impacts communities of color. As governor, he will continue his fight for nonpartisan redistricting reform.
Additionally, Ralph will increase transparency in the General Assembly by fighting to end the practice of unrecorded voice votes, which are used to kill good legislation every year, so that Virginians know exactly what their elected representatives are voting for and against.
He will work to make all past and future video recordings of floor sessions, committee, and subcommittee meetings public records accessible to all Virginians. And he will coordinate with those inside and outside of government to expand Virginians’ access to live streams of floors sessions, committee and subcommittee meetings, because Virginians deserve the right to watchdog their government.
Virginians deserve a government that is both transparent and accessible. As a former member of the General Assembly Privileges and Elections Committee, Ralph understands the importance of expanding access to voting and standing up to disenfranchisement. And as governor, he’ll fight to make progress toward it every day.