Making government more open, responsive to, and reflective of ordinary citizens.
Narrow special interests disproportionately influence elections, public debate, and the government’s decision-making process, often drowning out the voice, subverting the will, and harming the interest of the general public. VPIRG is working for a more participatory and inclusive democracy: in favor of government transparency and integrity, against big money politics, and for more fair and accessible elections.
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Latest Democracy News
Minutes after debate over corporate influence, Coca-Cola wins out over public good in Senate Finance Committee MONTPELIER, VT—Just minutes after an extended floor debate about the possible influence of corporate contributions, the Senate Finance Committee opted against a publicly-supported proposal to have the state keep an estimated $1-3 million per year in unclaimed Bottle Bill nickels ...Read More
Corporations are not people. But for more than 100 years, federal law has prohibited corporations from contributing directly to candidates running for federal office. Here in Vermont, though, the law treats corporations just like you or me. Your help could fix the problem, but we need to get moving fast. Ask your senator(s) to vote against ...Read More
On Tuesday, we sent out an email blast asking our members to urge the Senate to seize their one opportunity to pass commonsense rules on money in politics. We’d caught wind that some state senators were playing political games with this important legislation, and we weren’t about to stand by and watch. Guess what? Hundreds of member ...Read More
As the saying goes, foxes don’t make the best guards for the chicken coop. That logic may also apply when it comes to politicians regulating money in politics. Burlington Free Press political reporter Terri Hallenbeck wrote a story last week that concluded with this statement: “It struck me that elected officials are the last people on ...Read More
NEWS RELEASE Montpelier, VT – Vermont received a “C+” when it comes to government spending transparency, according to “Following the Money 2013: How the States Rank on Providing Online Access to Government Spending Data,” the fourth annual report of its kind by a federation of public interest research groups that includes the Vermont Public Interest Research Group ...Read More
When the Senate Government Operations Committee initially contemplated dramatically raising the contribution limits to candidates and political action committees, VPIRG organized a response that also included the LWV-VT and Ben Cohen. After threatening to oppose the bill, the committee reconsidered its position and ended up with limits much closer to those VPIRG suggested. The limits are ...Read More
Some of Vermont’s most well-known advocates for campaign finance reform took issue today with a proposed bill in the state Senate that would dramatically increase the amount of money in Vermont’s political campaigns. The Senate Government Operations Committee has been working all year on legislation – S.82 – that would require increased reporting from political action ...Read More
In communities across Vermont, citizens are bringing solutions to town. Whether its town meeting resolutions to keep Vermont free of tar sands oil or spreading critical information about upcoming changes to health care, check to see what’s on the docket in your community.Read More