About The Battle for the Ballot

Voting rights protestors outside the White House in 1963 (Photo credit: Library of Congress)

One of the first things kids learn in school is that in America, unlike many countries, we are free to choose our leaders and our government. We don’t have kings or emperors or dictators — we vote. The person or law we vote for doesn’t always win, but we’re all supposed to have an equal stake in deciding the direction of the country.

But over the last two decades, attacks on that principle are on the rise. Gerrymandering, disinformation, identification laws, voter “purges,” election restrictions, polling place intimidation, and unlimited “dark” campaign spending all threaten to suppress and diminish the impact of our vote. These efforts to restrict, suppress, or marginalize voters are unethical and un-American. And they matter — in 2000, the presidential election came down to 537 votes out of 101 million; earlier this year, control of the Virginia House of Delegates came down to ONE vote. The old cliche is right: every vote counts.

America is better when its people are engaged and involved in democracy. We should encourage more Americans to vote rather than put barriers in their way. So the Battle for the Ballot is committed to covering this issue every week to keep you informed about what’s going on and what we can do to protect our democracy. If you haven’t already subscribed, sign up now. If you’re already a subscriber, thank you!


Who’s behind this?

Matt PusateriI’m Matt Pusateri, a freelance writer based in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. I’m working on a book about the attacks on the right to vote.

When I’m not scouring news feeds, studying court briefs, or researching voting issues, I run Flying Dog Creative, which helps nonprofits and businesses tell their story online and engage their audiences. I also used to work for the Center for American Progress and People for the American Way, where we advocated for and defended voting rights.