What We Do
Who We Are
The National Voting Rights Institute is a non-partisan, non-profit organization committed to making real the promise of American democracy that meaningful political participation and power should be accessible to all regardless of economic or social status. NVRI is based in Boston, though NVRI can be found wherever in the country voters are disenfranchised.
In the Spring of 2006, NVRI signed a formal collaboration agreement with the organization Demos. You can read the press release about this collaboration agreement here. As of January 2007, all NVRI staff were hired by Demos, and now work out of Demos. NVRI as an organization continues to operate on a more reduced scale, supporting work done by Demos and continuing to further the goals of NVRI.
NVRI's central goals to achieve our core purpose are as follows:
- Pass and successfully defend reforms that limit campaign spending in local, statewide and national elections.
- Strengthen, defend and protect political participation against threats at the state and local level.
- Affirm and support constitutional protection of the right to vote.
- Obtain public funding for local, state and federal elections.
NVRI has led the national effort to reconsider campaign spending limits as a constitutional means of making meaningful political participation available to all Americans. In its 1976 Buckley v. Valeo decision, the U.S. Supreme Court equated money with speech when it struck down congressional campaign spending limits on First Amendment grounds. It is that decision that NVRI has attempted to change, both through litigation and coalition work.
NVRI is active in efforts to enfranchise U.S. citizens, through lawsuits in many states and jurisdictions regarding absentee ballots, provisional voting, candidate filing fees, public access to contribution records, and enforcement of campaign spending laws, among other things. CLICK HERE FOR MORE. Among NVRI's most recent efforts is pursuit of a full and meaningful recount of the Ohio presidential ballots in 2004. CLICK HERE FOR MORE.
NVRI also initiated the only Wealth Primary lawsuits in the country, challenging campaign finance laws on equal protection grounds and seeking public financing of elections. Private money is one of the most significant barriers to voting rights in the country. CLICK HERE FOR MORE.
NVRI is committed to public funding for elections, believing that this is one of the best ways for political participation to be available to all.