Democracy

A threat to democracy anywhere is a threat to democracy everywhere. In the United States, people continue to have low levels of trust in governmental institutions, believe that the system is too prone to corruption, and feel that their democracy does not fully represent their priorities. Moreover, the past several years have seen repeated attacks on two foundational democratic norms: ensuring voters choose their elected leaders without partisan interference in election administration and broad condemnation of political violence and extremism. The violent January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol in 2021 and threats to judges and election officials have illustrated the harm caused by the erosion of widely accepted norms. We have also seen consistent and sustained attacks on democracies globally—most egregiously, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine—which threaten cooperation on climate action, migration, food security, and shared prosperity.

For these and other reasons, the Center for American Progress is laser focused on restoring social trust in democracy in the United States and around the world, using existing and new methods. Our coordinated, comprehensive, and far-reaching policy strategy is developed with and advanced through the power of coalitions, narrative change, public education, and advocacy. Domestically, CAP is focused on advancing pro-democracy policies that will make U.S. democracy more representative of all Americans, reducing dangerous political extremism and violence, reforming outmoded government structures, and holding leaders accountable for breaking laws and norms. CAP is also committed to advancing a progressive and values-driven vision for a new era of U.S. engagement internationally that which reinforces the country’s domestic priorities. National security goes beyond mere military power; it includes the need for a greater global response to complex crises and effective ways to strengthen America’s economic and political competitiveness in the world.

The U.S. Capitol building is seen at dusk with a clear blue sky in the background.
The U.S. Capitol building is seen in Washington, D.C., on November 13, 2023. (Getty/Mandel NGAN/AFP)
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The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals Is Spearheading a Judicial Power Grab Report
A demonstrator holds a sign in front of the U.S. Supreme Court building.

The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals Is Spearheading a Judicial Power Grab

The rogue 5th Circuit Court has helped undermine the separation of powers, established precedent, and principled legal reasoning to accomplish right-wing policy goals; the Supreme Court continuing to follow suit would strip power away from elected representatives and American voters.

Jeevna Sheth, Devon Ombres

How the Racist History of the Filibuster Lives on Today Report
Photo shows the Capitol building against a background of dark gray storm clouds

How the Racist History of the Filibuster Lives on Today

By blocking the passage of the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, the filibuster continues its long history as an institutional tool used to oppress Black and brown Americans.

Greta Bedekovics

Citizens United Gave Corporations, But Not Their Boards, the Authority To Spend in Candidate Elections Report
U.S. Supreme Court

Citizens United Gave Corporations, But Not Their Boards, the Authority To Spend in Candidate Elections

Since 2010, corporate boards and management have been handing over the constitutional rights of individual U.S.-citizen shareholders to large shareholders and foreign nationals; shareholders can put a stop to this, and lawmakers, regulators, and courts can help them.

The Protection of Voting Rights Requires State Action Report
Photo shows a red sign with blue text that reads

The Protection of Voting Rights Requires State Action

As legislation on voting rights awaits action in Congress—and states continue to pass restrictive, discriminatory voting policies and the courts strip federal voter protections—states must step up and protect the right to vote.

Rebecca Mears

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Tackling Climate Change and Environmental Injustice

Tackling Climate Change and Environmental Injustice

We pursue climate action that meets the crisis’s urgency, creates good-quality jobs, benefits disadvantaged communities, and restores U.S. credibility on the global stage.

Restoring Social Trust in Democracy

Restoring Social Trust in Democracy

Democracy is under attack at home and abroad. We must act to ensure it is accessible to all, accountable, and can serve as a force of good.

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