The speaking program will focus on the group’s campaign for a “Civic Dollars” campaign financing system in New Hampshire.
“Open Democracy believes in an equal voice for all,” said Executive Director Olivia Zink. “Through our NH Rebellion campaign, we are working to stop big money in politics, end partisan gerrymandering, protect the right to vote, and more by engaging thousands of Granite Staters in nonpartisan civic involvement.”
In 2018, the group will be supporting “Civic Dollars” legislation with bipartisan support in Concord. A Civic Dollars system would help balance the influence of out-of-state dark money in New Hampshire’s elections. It would also end the so-called “money primary” that keeps qualified candidates from running for office, empower every citizen to fund the candidate(s) of their choice, and encourage voter participation. Maine, Arizona and Connecticut already have this type of system at the state level; and some cities, including Albuquerque, NM, have also passed this kind of election reform.
When enacted, the measure would allow political candidates to opt-in to a “Civic Dollars” system that will limit campaign contributions to $250 per person. It would also ban out-of-state donors; require quick disclosure of contributions; create a voluntary program for citizen-funded campaign financing through four $25 “civic dollars” issued to registered voters that could be donated to qualified candidates of the voter’s choice; and establish an agency to enforce campaign finance laws.
“We all want our children and the next generation to have a better life and more opportunities than we did. But too many hard-working Granite Staters are just barely scraping by because wealthy donors and special interests have too much power and make the rules.” Zink said. “If we want our children and the next generation to inherit a free and fair New Hampshire, that will take coming together to make our democracy work for all of us.”
NH Rebellion members have walked a total of more than 40,000 miles, continuing the legacy of New Hampshire’s legendary campaign finance reform activist “Granny D.” The network of more than 33,000 local activists have organized town meetings, circulated petitions, supported legislation and “Asked The Question” hundreds of times to get candidates on the record about their position on campaign reform.
Scholar-activist Lawrence Lessig draws inspiration from the “rebellion clause” of the New Hampshire Constitution, which empowers citizens “to reform the old or establish a new government” when laws serve a privileged few rather than “the common benefit, protection, and security of the whole community.
NH Rebellion is part of Open Democracy, the Concord-based nonpartisan reform organization founded by Granny D. To learn more, please visit: www.nhrebellion.org.