Vote at Home - Amber McReynolds, Jesse Wegman, Ian Haney López - 05/01/2020 - 9:00pm

Vote at Home


Presented in partnership with the Bay Area Book Festival, Amber McReynolds and Jesse Wegman discuss vote by mail in conversation with Ian Haney Lopez. Watch the event online.


As highlighted by urgent op-eds and leading journalists, the November 2020 election will be disrupted, perhaps severely, by the COVID-19 pandemic. There’s a secure and well-studied solution available: voting by mail, which promises to protect public health and the integrity of our democracy. What are the pathways to making vote-by-mail widely available? What are the challenges? Who implements this kind of policy change, and where? And, with the most consequential election of our lifetimes less than six months away, how can citizens organize to push for this bipartisan mandate and actually get results within an urgent timeframe?


Jesse Wegman has written about the Supreme Court and legal affairs for the New York Times editorial board since 2013, and his book Let the People Pick the President: The Case for Abolishing the Electoral College was praised by National Book Award winner and MacArthur fellow Annette Gordon-Reed as a “timely and erudite work that should interest all who are interested in the future of the United States.” He’s joined by Amber McReynolds, CEO for the National Vote At Home Institute and Coalition and co-author of When Women Vote. These nationally recognized experts on voting rights, the Constitution, and electoral law engage in a spirited and forward-looking conversation moderated by Ian Haney Lopez, author of Merge Left, which astutely examines the role of coded racism in contemporary political campaigns.

Amber McReynolds

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Amber McReynolds is one of the country’s leading experts on election administration and policy, and co-author of the book When Women Vote. Amber is the CEO for the National Vote At Home Institute and Coalition and is the former Director of Elections for Denver, Colorado. During her time there, she transformed the elections division into a national and international award-winning office. She has proven that designing pro-voter policies, voter-centric processes, and implementing technical innovations will improve representation for all voters.


Amber serves as an advisory board member for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Election and Data Science Lab, a board member for Lift Colorado, a board member for Represent Women, and serves on various advisory boards for other national organizations focused on improving election administration. Among other accolades, Amber was also named by Governing Magazine as a 2018 Top Public Official of the Year for her work. Amber holds a Masters of Science degree in Comparative Politics from the London School of Economics and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Communications from the University of Illinois.

Recent Book
When Women Vote

Jesse Wegman

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Jesse Wegman has been a member of The New York Times editorial board since 2013, writing editorials on the Supreme Court and legal affairs. He was previously a senior editor at the Daily Beast and Newsweek, a legal news editor at Reuters, and the managing editor of the New York Observer. He is the author of Let the People Pick the President: The Case for Abolishing the Electoral College, of which Annette Gordon-Reed said, "this timely and erudite work should interest all who are interested in the future of the United States." He graduated from New York University School of Law in 2005.

Recent Book
Let the People Pick the President

Ian Haney López

Presenter photo

Ian Haney López is a law professor at the University of California, Berkeley, where he teaches in the areas of race and constitutional law. Haney López is the author of Merge Left: Fusing Race and Class, Winning Elections, and Saving America and Dog Whistle Politics: How Coded Racial Appeals Have Reinvented Racism and Wrecked the Middle Class, plus two other books and two anthologies. He co-founded the Race-Class Narrative Project, and also co-chaired the AFL-CIO’s Advisory Council on Racial and Economic Justice. He holds an endowed chair as the Earl Warren Professor of Public Law at UC Berkeley and lives in Richmond, California.