Daily Resource Highlight - 11/08/2021

Posted by on November 08, 2021 at 12:29 PM

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

November 2, 2021 - GO VOTE! And be willing to lose.

Campaigns aren’t supposed to admit that defeat is possible. It’s discouraging to supporters and may make people feel like their vote doesn’t matter. But losing is a reality that most candidates for office have faced at one point or another. It’s hard to win an election!

With this in mind, what should we expect from candidates who fall short? To ask it slightly differently, what will you expect if your chosen candidate falls short? There is no requirement to concede a given election, but accepting defeat is an important democratic norm. The R Street Institute recently hosted a panel discussion on “Losers’ Consent,” where they discuss this norm; the recent trend of refusing to “consent” to defeat; and how we can work toward a healthier political culture.

At the same time, let’s not be premature! Today is Election Day and it’s important that each of us exercises our right to vote. And for citizens in a number of states including New York, Maine, Texas, and Colorado, there are important ballot measures (Ballotpedia) that need your attention. You can see a summary of some of the most consequential measures here.

Finally, we want to give a big shout out to ActiVote. They conducted a 16 month study of their users and found that using their app increases voter turnout by 33% above expected turnout. We deeply appreciate the success that ActiVote has had in encouraging civic participation.

November 4, 2021 - A Different Kind of College Rivalry -- Civic Rivalry

I studied law at the University of Michigan, which means two things: (1) I’m now a big Wolverines fan (if you’re a Buckeyes fan, I’ll understand if you unsubscribe) and (2) my ears perk up when Bridge Alliance members talk about Ann Arbor, MI.

On Tuesday, Ann Arbor voted to adopt Ranked Choice Voting for city elections. According to FairVote, this marks 13 straight successful ballot measures to adopt RCV in city elections. RepresentUs also celebrated Ann Arbor’s vote, though they noted that implementation requires a change in state law

You can be forgiven, though, if your focus was elsewhere on Tuesday. A whole lot happened, including two high-profile governor races. You can get a recap of the results on Ballotpedia. Perhaps most importantly, though, millions of Americans made their voices heard with their vote, and if recent history is any indication, that included hundreds of thousands of college students.

I say “recent history” because Tisch College at Tufts University just came out with a study showing a large uptick in participation among Michigan State students (66% -> 76.6%) during the most recent presidential election. MSU credits Campus Election Engagement Project and other nonprofits for helping to drive this increase.

As a Michigan fan, I don’t like complimenting Michigan State (in case you don’t know, they are our other big rival). However, I respect their commitment to empowering their students and I am hopeful that students at my alma mater see MSU’s high mark as a challenge and work to best it. That’s the kind of college rivalry we can all get behind.