Clean Elections Minnesota is a non-profit, non-partisan group of Minnesotans concerned that the power of Big Money, Dark Money, and Corporate Money is overwhelming the public interest in local, state, and national elections—especially since the Supreme Court's disastrous decision in Citizens United. We're dedicated to educating ourselves and others about ways to maintain and enhance the democratic power of ordinary citizens to resist the rise of oligarchy locally and nationally—and we're committed to putting ideas into action. Although our main energies are devoted to education, we maintain a presence at the legislature when it's in session. We also have a growing presence as panelists and speakers.
To contribute online, click the donate button. To donate by mail, make a check payable to Minnesota Citizens for Clean Elections and mail to MnCCE Treasurer, 1780 Lake St., Lauderdale, Mn 55113.
It certainly appears that voting in person this year in August and November will likely be less safe. I hate to think about giving up our tradition of voting in person on Election Day. But, realistically, most of us will need to learn how to apply for a no excuse absentee ballot, which can be done beginning May 13. The first stop is the website of the Secretary of State – www.sos.state.mn.us — and click on Elections and Voting. After you successfully complete the application, you will receive confirmation on line. The ballot will come to you later in the mail. You will need a registered voter or a notary (often free at a bank or credit union) as a witness on the ballot. When you have completed the ballot, return it as directed, but keep in mind that it must be received before Election Day. This is pretty cool – you can track the status of your ballot on the website to confirm that it was received and counted.
What if you change your mind about your vote? You can request that your ballot be cancelled up to one week prior to the election. You can then vote in person or request another ballot. Also, very cool – you can apply to have an absentee ballot automatically sent to you before each election.
Please spread the word about voting this year on August 11 and November 3. Be sure to talk to friends and relatives even if it’s not in person. You can let them know that we can also register online and can vote early in person at the county election office, when hopefully there will be fewer people present. I can’t think of a more consequential election for our nation – and I’m old. But we will need to be a little bit more proactive this year and perhaps not just stroll into the polls to exercise our right to vote.
If you’re dissatisfied with the current method of selecting a president, by which the winner in the Electoral votes sometimes differs from the candidate who wins the national popular vote, there are possible alternatives. Mark Bohnhorst, leader of Clean Elections MN’s presidential elections team, has been researching and promoting alternatives for several years. Here are two–neither of them requires amending the US Constitution to eliminate the Electoral College.
National Choice Ballot
The National Choice Ballot–also known as the Voter’s Choice Ballot– works like this: Each presidential ballot would include an option to vote for your choice among the listed candidates, just like the current system. But there would also be an option to vote for the winner of the national popular vote if your first choice doesn’t win. Sound intriguing? Click here to read Mark’s full explanation, which now includes an April 2020 Supplement with scenarios of how the Ballot might work. Do you have questions? Click here for answer to frequently asked questions, such as “Does this violate one person: one vote rule?” (Spoiler alert: Nope.)
National Popular Vote Interstate Compact
States who adopt the Compact agree that their electoral votes will go to winner of the national popular vote–regardless of who wins the presidential contest in their state. For the Compact to take effect, the states included must control a majority of the Electoral College Votes (270 votes out of 538). To read Mark’s complete explanation of the Compact, click here.