With the overwhelming passage of ethics reform and successful implementation of online voter registration and lobby reform, 2016 was a big year for good government in the Ocean State.Building on those victories, the Common Cause Rhode Island State Governing Board has set our legislative priorities for 2017:
1. Line Item Veto:
The line-item veto is a next logical step in creating a better balance between the executive and legislative branches of Rhode Island government. Common Cause supports putting a question on the 2018 ballot allowing voters to put the line-item veto into our state constitution.
2. Early Voting:
Rhode Island saw explosive growth in the use of mail ballots in 2016 and our elections strained under the pressure. Common Cause supports a system of real early voting to meet the demand of voters and maintain the integrity of the system. The Bay State adopted early voting last year and one out of three voters used the new system.
3. Post Election Audits: Passed the Senate
Our state invested millions in new voting equipment in 2016 but put no systems in place to assess their performance, or make sure there is no tampering with the system. Common Cause supports legislation mandating post-election audits. Such systems are used to catch human errors as well as actions by those who may seek to hack our elections.
4. Automatic Voter Registration: Passed & Signed into Law
Finally, we will support legislation for automatic and portable voter registration. Building off the success of online voter registration, Rhode Island can use technology to both increase participation of qualified voters and keep the registration rolls cleaner.