The US is unusual among democracies in the extent to which the competing entities in elections, the candidates and their political parties, decide key rules of the same elections they will contest. Most democracies mitigate this obvious conflict of interest through some form of independent election administration. Independent administration isn’t on the horizon here, and we can’t count on the parties to care more about democracy than their own self-interest. That leaves safeguarding democracy to our civil society.
We estimate that in 2016 the ratio of spending for partisan purpose vs spending for the good of our democracy was 99 to 1. We believe that has to change, and for that reason we engage with foundations and philanthropists looking for guidance in their support for election reform.