From rock to reform: Novoselic to chair FairVote election group
Published January 29th 2008 in The Olympian
Washingtonian Krist Novoselic, the one-time bassist with 1990s grunge band Nirvana, was named this week as the new chairman of the board for FairVote, the national election-reform group.

FairVote, whose director Rob Richie used to live in Olympia, has championed instant-runoff, or ranked voting, around the country, winning a half-dozen campaigns in such places as Pierce County and cities like Minneapolis.

It also has promoted a new way of voting that would bypass the Electoral College and ensure that whoever wins the popular vote is elected president.

A related bill backed by FairVote is pending in the Washington Legislature, part of a nationwide strategy to get states to pledge their electoral votes to the popular-vote winner.

Novoselic said in a statement released by the Washington, D.C.-based group:

"Most of our elections are uncompetitive, lack winners with a majority of the vote, and discourage voter choice and participation. These coming years are critical ones for advancing positive reforms that bring more choices and new voices into our politics. I am ready to lead FairVote, building on its recent string of reform victories."

Novoselic replaces former Congressman John B. Anderson, who ran for president as an independent in 1980, and could bring an interesting approach. He already was on FairVote's board and wrote a book, "Of Grunge & Government: Let's Fix This Broken Democracy."

"So he's been on the cutting edge for some time," FairVote spokesman Ryan O'Donnell said today.

Novoselic was mentioned as a possible candidate for lieutenant governor in 2004 and to run this year against U.S. Rep. Brian Baird, D-Vancouver, but Novoselic has preferred to keep working on grassroots efforts.


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