One year ago tomorrow, President Bush signed into law the Help America Vote Act. For the first time in our history, this
landmark legislation recognizes the need for a Federal partnership in the conduct of Federal elections. This partnership does
not usurp the authority of State and local governments to administer Federal elections. But it does provides leadership and
support through the establishment of Federal minimum requirements that all Federal elections must meet and provides appropriate
Federal funding to finance the implementation of those requirements.
No civil right is more fundamental to our democracy than the right to vote. It is the mechanism in a democracy by which
the voice of the people is heard. According to Thomas Paine, the right to vote "is the primary right by which other rights
In America's democracy, that right must mean an equal opportunity for every eligible citizen to cast a vote and have that
vote counted. Absent that basic premise, the integrity of the outcome of an election, indeed the integrity of our representative
form of government, is at risk.
And that is why, following the 2000 presidential elections, a bipartisan group of Senators and Congressmen came together
to enact the Help America Vote Act. While we initially viewed the outcome of the 2000 elections very differently, in the end,
we all agreed that the Federal government had an appropriate role to play to ensure that in our democracy, we made it easier
to vote and harder to defraud the system...
Governors, Secretaries of State, election officials... the list goes on and on of those who take an oath of office to
uphold the United States Constitution, and their respective state's Constitution, yet apparently haven't taken the time to
understand our foundation is as a republic, for a reason.
Dear Hoosier voter,
HAVA is a significant piece of federal legislation designed to protect the individual's right
to vote, and to safeguard our precious democracy. Before HAVA was enacted, and during the years since, we have worked diligently
to improve our election processes.
By January 1, 2006, - the HAVA implementation deadline - I am proud to say that
Indiana had established itself as a leader in election reform among the 50 states.
On Election Day, please exercise
your right to vote, and know that your vote counts!
Indiana Secretary of State
Unfortunately, many of the sites and organizations that have taken up the gauntlet of voter issues refer to
the United States as a democracy. Vote Fix links to these sites for the information provided for use to make an informed
opinion about election and voting issues. It would be impossible to insert a disclaimer on each link:
careful, this site, this organization, this voter activist group calls the U.S. erroneously, a democracy when the United
States was founded as a republic.
The most egregious do stand out:
To stay on top of HAVA and other democracy reform developments, sign up for Democracy Dispatches, our free email newsletter
As well, take a look carefully at Help America Vote Act (HAVA). How many times is democracy used?
The United States was founded as a republic.
A democracy is not guaranteed as the form of government to each of the states. A republic is guaranteed by our
United States Constitution.