Unite NY Announces New Plan to Build Stronger Democracy Through More Voices and More Choices
Independent Organization Transitions to Membership Model Focused on Research, Partnership, Education and Advocacy
Albany, NY – In order to bring more democracy to more people, Unite NY, an organization focused on bringing together moderate and middle-of-the-road New Yorkers frustrated by the state’s broken, hyper-partisan political system, has announced a change in strategic direction. Beginning in 2023, the organization will emphasize growing partnerships and membership, with a focus on research, education, and advocacy.
The abysmally low turnout in the 2022 election was a fulcrum for Unite NY, as more than two million independent voters stayed home. The lack of choice at the ballot box, with only two candidates to choose from for Governor for only the second time in state history, signaled an urgent need for change. Unite NY will no longer be directly endorsing candidates, instead focusing on building broad based support for a very specific set of reforms that create a more fair, open, and representative democracy. By focusing on issues, not candidates, Unite NY will seek to directly drive change and encourage investments in strengthening our democracy.
Unite NY Founder Martin Babinec said, “If we are to ever going to fix an utterly broken political system in this state, we need to find common sense solutions that work across party lines and engage a broader electorate, including those so discouraged they are not even turning out to vote. When seven million New Yorkers decide to stay home on election day, we have a problem. The hyper-partisan approach seen too often in New York is not a path to success.”
Babinec continued, “We will articulate a compelling message that addresses voter’s interests and create a new path to engage both individuals and organizations who are ready to fight for reform. We are excited about this transformation and aim to bring together people who are tired of ‘politics as usual’ and arm them with the data and pathways needed to let our collective voice be heard.”
Unite NY will place a renewed focus on growing its partner and membership base, including forging new relationships with New York State and national organizations seeking change in our political system. Unite will also engage New York voters from all over the state, educating and empowering them as part of an organization that works to fight for real and achievable reform.
A key part of this effort will be the continuation of Unite NY’s successful Voter Empowerment Index, which will provide new independent polling in 2023 to track voter sentiment on key reform issues. Unite NY will use that data to arm members and supporters with information that will be shared with decision-makers and the media to show the growing conviction of New Yorkers seeking more voices and more choices, and a government that works for them.
In the past Unite NY has provided support to candidates during the election cycle, in 2023, the organization will shift to advocating for specific legislative changes in Albany. These advocacy efforts will focus on five key areas:
More Candidates – seeking changes to make it easier for candidates to get on the ballot.
More Choices – Enacting term limits statewide.
More Democracy – Enabling initiative and referendum.
Empowering Voters – Expanding the use of Ranked Choice Voting.
More Voices – opening New York’s notoriously closed primaries to independent voters.
Unite NY is currently recruiting new members and will have more announcements on exciting new partnerships and research throughout the year.
About Unite NY
Unite NY is a movement focused on engaging and empowering voters on important issues of reform that will allow for more voices and more choices and ultimately, more democracy. The membership organization seeks a more fair, open, and representative democracy that results in the voice of voters being heard by evolving the electoral system so that officials put what voters want ahead of party interests. Learn more at www.UniteNY.org.