I’m excited to share with you that Governor Walz signed the Democracy for the People Act! My bill which Secretary of State Steve Simon described as “a once-in-a-generation achievement in expanding and protecting the freedom to vote in Minnesota” became law last Friday!
In many ways, the Democracy for the People Act is a long-time coming, building on Minnesota’s proud tradition of strengthening the voices of Minnesotans in our democracy. But in other ways this bill is urgent. It comes at an important moment in our country’s history. What we have seen over the past couple of years and over the last couple of months is that states across the country are making a choice between multi-racial, multi-generational, gender-inclusive democracy, or something else that doesn’t look like democracy at all.
Minnesota is choosing democracy for the people. In 2022, Democracy was on the ballot - up and down the ballot, Minnesotans showed up not just to participate in our democracy, but to protect it. Minnesotans elected pro-democracy majorities with a mandate to protect and strengthen inclusive democracy
The Democracy for the People Act strengthens the freedom to vote by instituting automatic voter registration and allowing 16- and 17-year-olds to pre-register to vote. The bill also expands access to the ballot by allowing all voters to choose to vote by mail on a permanent absentee ballot list.
The bill protects our democratic institutions and voters with measures prohibiting voter intimidation, harassment, and deceptive practices intended to interfere with the vote. It also ensures voters have access to the information they need to vote, in the language they need it.
With dark money continually gaining greater influence in our elections, the Democracy for the People Act empowers Minnesota voters to have more control in our elections. The bill closes dark money loopholes and increases transparency to unveil who is spending to influence Minnesota elections. It also prohibits foreign-influence corporations from spending money in Minnesota elections.
This is a critical moment for our democracy. We know that solving our most significant challenges requires all of us to come together and build a democracy that centers the voices of all Minnesotans. Minnesotans gave us a mandate to act with urgency to protect and strengthen our democracy, and that is what this legislation does. In the North Star State, we are showing the country what a strong, inclusive, multi-racial democracy looks like.
This is a victory that was made possible by the tens of thousands of Minnesotans who organized and mobilized and the millions more who gave us the mandate we needed to get the Democracy for the People Act done. Thank you to all of you who rallied, called, emailed and engaged your neighbors in support of our inclusive democracy legislation!
Thank you for your time, energy, and all you do to make our community a great place for everyone. Please reach out to me with your input and ideas, or if I can ever be of assistance. My email is email@example.com or you are always welcome to call me at the Capitol at 651-296-4200 and follow my Facebook page for updates.
It’s an honor and a privilege to be your State Representative and I look forward to working with you to create a stronger, brighter future for all Minnesotans!