I researched and wrote a 24-page guide advocating against a ballot measure to enshrine Voter ID in the Minnesota Constitution. Greater MN Counts was sent to all news outlets beyond the Twin Cities metro as part of a groundbreaking multiplatform strategic information campaign heavily reliant on content creation and earned-media coverage. Click on the logo to access the full report.
Minnesota holds a storied placed in American politics.
The state’s bipartisan approach to governance, dubbed the Minnesota Miracle, led national headlines in 1971, when opposing parties found common ground to grow the economy and secure excellence in education.
That standard also applied to elections. Dating to statehood, Minnesota established itself as a leader in expanding ballot access by knocking down barriers to full participation. And faith in the system ran high, given changes consistently and historically stood above party politics — remaining nonpartisan even in otherwise rancorous times and even when three parties split power in St. Paul.
Minnesotans responded, turning out to vote at rates consistently higher than the national average — cementing the state’s rank as No. 1 over the last quarter-century.
More than 150 years of precedent was upended in 2011, however, when monumental changes to the state’s election system were proposed and adopted along a series of strict party-line votes. Mimicking the political divisions playing out in statehouses elsewhere, the proposed constitutional amendment on elections unleashed a firestorm of partisan charges and counter-charges.
The following pages forgo politics to consider the amendment’s impacts on outstate Minnesotans and their communities. This includes a look at the significant unknowns that will remain until supporting legislation is written next year, should the amendment pass in November.
Greater MN Counts is a joint project of the League of Rural Voters and Citizens for Election Integrity-MN, two Minnesota-based nonprofits.