As the United States continues to be divided over what happened in the 2020 presidential election, Congress and the states are deciding the rules which will govern future elections and debating issues of voter participation and suppression. The House has passed and sent to the Senate sweeping legislation to expand voting rights, change campaign finance, limit partisan gerrymandering, and create new ethics rules. Several states are adopting new laws which in some cases limit or restrict voter access. Some say the focus should be on greater election security; others insist the primary goal should be greater voter participation. There is also debate about whether these issues are best handled at the federal or state level.
Are these battles simply additional arenas of partisan combat in which participants continue to refight the last election? Are there more fundamental values at stake? What are the moral dimensions of these decisions? What does democracy require? What does Catholic social teaching offer? How can the common good best be advanced?
This dialogue among diverse leaders examined:
- Facts on voter participation, suppression, indifference, and turnout.
- The history of voting rights, the current debate, and the choices facing states and the nation.
- Directions suggested by religious faith and Catholic social teaching.
John Carr, co-director of the Initiative, moderated the dialogue.
View a list of articles, books, podcasts, and other resources for this dialogue.