Voter Choice for Massachusetts 2020 announced Wednesday that it has smashed the signature requirement to get ranked-choice voting on the November ballot. Campaign workers say they are on pace to collect the most signatures for a ballot initiative in Massachusetts history.
In an email to supporters, the campaign said it has collected 17,084 raw signatures, and is averaging over 800 new signatures per day. It needs 13,347 verified signatures by June 17 to go before state voters in the general election.
If approved, Massachusetts in 2022 would become the second state, after nearby Maine, to adopt the system for electing all state executive officials, legislators and members of Congress.
"Thanks to our amazing volunteers, we're right on track to meet and exceed our campaign goal of 25,000" the campaign said.
According to the campaign, the signature validity rate is around 73 percent. This means it appears likely that the campaign has already cleared the necessary bar it needs to get to November, and should have more than enough cushion by the deadline.
A few weeks ago an evocative meme was making the social media rounds: a picture of the leaders of Germany, New Zealand, Belgium, Finland, Iceland and Denmark with the caption “COVID-19 is everywhere but countries with heads of state managing the crisis better seem to have something in common…” Of course the answer was that they were all women. The narrative is that from Angela Merkel of Germany to Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand to Tsai Ing-wen of Taiwan (as well as the leaders of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, and Norway), it does appear that countries who have female leaders at the helm are proving to be faring better during the pandemic thanks to their effective handling of the response to the COVID-19 crisis.
After just six days of sheltering in place, I found myself thinking about all the women I’d taken for granted.
Of course, no one could have foreseen a pandemic upending life as we know it. But as the threat of coronavirus became increasingly pressing, the state's Democratic leadership responded by cancelling the in-person caucuses and instead mailing every registered Democrat a ballot that could be dropped off or mailed back.
(Rick Egan | Tribune file photo) In this Jan. 31, 2020, file photo the Utah governor candidates are pictured. From left, Jeff Burningham, Aimee Winder Newton, Jon Huntsman, Thomas Wright, Greg Hughes and Spencer Cox pose for a group photo with Silicon Slopes Executive Director Clint Betts, center after a debate.
Women leaders Andrea Merkel, Tsai Ing-wen, Jacinda Ardernm Katrin Jakobsdottir, Sanna Marin, Erna Solberg, and Mette Frederikson from CNN.com
Many of you have probably seen the widely-circulated piece by Avivah Wittenberg-Cox in Forbes about the impressive role that women leaders have been playing in reducing the impact of the coronavirus in their respective countries. It's important to note that these countries all have some form of proportional representation voting system to elect their parliaments which, in tandem with intentional recruitment strategies, leads to more women getting elected and women's power becoming normalized. While the United States ranks 81st worldwide for women's representation, Germany ranks 49th, New Zealand ranks 20th, Iceland ranks 31st, Finland ranks 11th, Norway ranks 17th, and Denmark ranks 25th. Research confirms that voting systems have a clear impact on norms around women's leadership and representation, if you'd like to learn more click here. And read a snippet of the piece by Avivah Wittenberg-Cox below: