ICYMI: Top stories of the week

Each week, we bring you a collection of the most viewed stories from The Daily Brew, condensed. Here are the top stories from the week of December 11-December 15.

Thank you to everyone who has taken one of our reader surveys so far. We greatly appreciate your responses! We have a final set of questions for you on what you’d like to see more of from Ballotpedia. Please take a few moments to respond here.

Ballotpedia Holiday Cookie election, 2023

We are stocking up on flour, breaking out the sprinkles, and dusting off the cookie cutters. ‘Tis the season for holiday cookies! Do you have a favorite cookie, maybe one to pair with a cup of cocoa? We will refrain from endorsements because it is once again time to elect this year’s official holiday cookie!

Due to increased cookie candidates, we have decided to open this year’s election up to a primary and a general in order to narrow the field.

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12 Days of Ballotpedia

Happy holidays!

Over the next two weeks, we’re celebrating the “12 Days of Ballotpedia”.

Our focus is to illuminate various aspects of Ballotpedia’s mission and demonstrate the reliable and impartial information we provide on politics and policy.

We’re excited to share key aspects of our efforts and hope you will consider supporting Ballotpedia to help us extend our reach even further next year. To support Ballotpedia’s initiatives, please visit donate.ballotpedia.org/12daysofballotpedia

Your support means a lot to us at Ballotpedia, and we’re eager to offer even more resources in 2024. It promises to be an eventful year! Your support energizes our dedication to delivering premier information on politics and policy.

Endorsements in Ohio school board elections, 2023

Ohio had 1,486 school board seats up for election this year, just under half of the state’s 3,080 seats.

While these elections are officially nonpartisan, the Democratic and Republican Parties — and their affiliates, like county parties, youth organizations, and caucuses — often endorse candidates in these races.

We found endorsements for 14% of the 2,081 candidates who ran in the general election.

Of the two parties, Democratic endorsees had the higher win rate. Of their 130 endorsed candidates, 90 won, giving them a 69% win rate.

On the Republican side, of their 160 endorsed candidates, 86 won, giving them a 54% win rate.

Those totals include uncontested elections. If we look just at the endorsees who ran in races where they could have lost, the Democratic and Republican win rates drop to 66% and 44%, respectively.

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Listen to our four-part  podcast series on Ranked-Choice Voting

On the Ballot, Ballotpedia’s weekly podcast covering all things elections and American politics, just wrapped up a four-part series on ranked-choice voting (RCV), an emergent electoral system that has attracted growing attention in recent years.

This series takes a comprehensive look at RCV:

  • In our first installment, Ballotpedia Staff Writer Joe Greaney introduces RCV and walks us through this year’s legislation and ballot measures—and what we can expect to see in 2024.
  • In our second installment, FairVote Director of Research and Policy Deb Otis makes her case in support of RCV. Otis discusses how RCV fared in the November elections, highlighting the voting system’s perceived benefits, and addressing some of the most common concerns of voters and policymakers.
  • Our third installment, features Save Our States Executive Director Trent England, who makes his case in opposition to RCV. England outlines his major arguments against RCV, citing elections where he says RCV raised voter concerns, and shares ideas for alternative election reform methods.
  • The fourth and final episode in the series features Queens College Professor Jack Santucci discussing the origins of RCV in the 1850s and its previous peak in popularity during the Progressive and New Deal Eras.

To learn more about RCV, visit Ballotpedia’s new RCV Info Hub, a resource to address the lack of neutral resources to help voters understand what RCV is, how it’s used, its history, and why people support or oppose its use.

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