200+ Policy Positions Supported by Bipartisan Majorities

While Congress has been gridlocked over the past year, surprisingly, Voice of the People has continued to reveal even more common ground among the American people. We have now identified over 200 policy positions supported by a majority of both Republican and Democratic voters. These recently added common ground positions, found through the use of public consultation, include term limits for Congress, a $12 minimum wage, federal funding for substance use disorder treatment, and restricting federal policymakers from buying stocks and lobbying former colleagues. The Common Ground of the American People is a foundation on which leaders and the parties can build. It provides government officials a roadmap for solving problems and better reflecting the will of the people.

Congressional Stock Trading Ban At Forefront in 2024

Discussions in Congress about a Congressional stock trading ban have continued into the new year. The proposal has garnered support from a group of bipartisan ‘unlikely allies,’ Rep. Abigail Spanberger, Rep. Chip Roy, Sen. Josh Hawley, and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand. This week, Roll Call reported that Rep. Spanberger and her colleagues reached out to Speaker Mike Johnson to bring the ban to the floor for a vote in 2024. In the article, the Program for Public Consultation’s public consultation survey on the subject was highlighted, showing 86% of respondents, including 88% of Democrats and 87% of Republicans, favor preventing members of Congress from trading stock in individual companies. 

New Survey Shows Low Satisfaction With Democracy Among Americans

Americans’ outlook on U.S. democracy is looking dim by recent reports. Only 28% of American adults are reporting satisfaction with the democratic functions in our society, according to recent survey results by Gallup.

Going into an election year, Gallup reports that Americans are the least happy with U.S. democracy in the 40 years Gallup has asked this question. In 1984, 61% of respondents were happy with the way democracy was working in the nation. The data from the December 2023 study shows Republicans are more likely to say they are dissatisfied with the state of democracy than Democrats.

Participatory Democracy is New Focus of Jamaica’s People’s National Party

Jamaica’s People’s National Party (PNP) is revamping its governing mission to focus on giving citizens a stronger voice in local matters, in a growing trend towards participatory democracy seen around the world.

The PNP will prioritize four key areas: accountable governance, sustainable development, social empowerment, and infrastructure. Notably, PNP’s leader Mark Golding stressed the importance of citizen participation, pledging to create new avenues for residents to influence decision-making.

This focus on participatory democracy reflects a growing recognition of the need for more inclusive governance in Jamaica. By empowering citizens, the PNP hopes to rebuild trust and legitimacy, ultimately strengthening the country’s political landscape.

Wisdom of Crowds: Better Business Decision-Making

A study of real business decisions over two years by Cloverpop found that teams make better decisions than individuals 66% of the time. Compared to individual decision-making, teams enabled the consideration of more viewpoints and choices, and reduced bias. Diversity in teams (e.g. by age, race and geography) furthered those benefits, and more diverse teams make better decisions 87% of the time.

Ranked Choice Voting

It is officially election year and the debate over how elections should be run – both primaries and generals – is heating up again. One method that has been steadily gaining traction across the country is Ranked Choice Voting (RCV), in which voters rank the candidates and votes are distributed accordingly. 

Polling on using RCV in federal and local elections has consistently shown majority support of around six-in-ten, including majorities of Democrats and independents, as well as majorities in very red and very blue congressional districts. 

Among Republicans, views are more divided. A 2022 survey by the Program for Public Consultation found just 49% of Republicans in favor, with 51% saying it is at least “tolerable.”; and a 2023 survey by the Deliberative Democracy Lab found just 34% in favor, 35% opposed, and another 27% “in the middle.”

Support for RCV also differs significantly based on demographics. Among the youngest, highest-income, and most educated, around seven-in-ten are in favor; while support among their counterparts is just around half. There are also unique demographic differences between Republicans, with majority support among women (54% vs 46% of men) and those with the highest level of education (55% vs 41% of those with a high school education). Similar results were obtained for younger (18-34) vs older (65+) Republicans (55% vs 42%).

Banning Stock Trading for Members of Congress

Put yourself in the shoes of policymakers by trying our policymaking simulation on a Congressional Stock Trading Ban. In this simulation, you’ll get a briefing about the issue, learn the arguments for and against different proposals regarding banning Congressional stock trading, and determine your recommendations. Once you finish the simulation, you’ll have a chance to send your recommendation to your Congresspeople.