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Mayor-Elect LaToya Cantrell and City Council-elect Cyndi Nguyen and Jay Banks victorious!

Voters Organized to Educate is a group of people who care about equal justice and civil rights. We believe in a democracy where elected officials take a “rising tide lifts all ships” approach, who don’t stand for corruption, and are not performing public service as a way of enriching their friends, families, or selves.

Our vetting process looks into the past actions of a candidate, their stated plans for the office, and whether they say different things to different people. We look at who funds their campaigns, who endorses them, and why. Ultimately, we make a judgment call about who will be the most responsive to the needs of the residents in the community. We need leaders willing to lead, and people wise enough to admit mistakes before moving in a different direction.

In some races, a candidate has earned our endorsement with a long track record of service to the community and engagement with social justice groups who advocate for vulnerable or oppressed populations- such as people of Color, women, LGBTQ, unemployed, homeless, disabled, or bearing the mark of a criminal record. If a candidate is new to the fight for equality, they need to explain where they have been all this time.

In some races, we may endorse more than one candidate; and we would love it if such a dilemma were common. The flip side of that is: in some races we cannot endorse anyone, as none of the candidates rise up to an acceptable level of integrity and compassion.

In 2017, we developed a 10-point platform that addresses some, but not all, of the key issues around equal justice and civil rights. We asked the candidates to agree or disagree with our platform, as one way to show the public where the candidates stand; and one factor to consider in the endorsement process. On this site, you can compare candidates’ responses to the platform. Some did not send us their responses, and we leave any explanations or excuses to them.

We recognize that some of our questions directed at candidates for mayor, city council, and the state legislature are less appropriate for judicial candidates. In 2018, we will create a specific platform questionnaire for judicial candidates.

As Voters Organized to Educate grows, we look forward to building out key factors for key races, and expanding our endorsement committee. If you are interested in joining the endorsement committee, please contact Checo Yancy, our Field Director: Checo@VotersOrganized.org

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