Democracy on Deadline: Take Your Coverage of U.S. Elections to the Next Level

This Webinar was originally broadcast on:
June 28, 2018 Enroll Now
Watch and listen to the original one-hour Webinar in its entirety. This Webinar recording features the full presentation led by Poynter faculty and visiting faculty including Q&A from the audience and resources from the presenter.

Course Overview

Democracy on Deadline: Take Your Coverage of U.S. Elections to the Next Level
Free, thanks to the generous support of Democracy Fund
Originally Broadcast On:
June 28, 2018
Time Estimate:
One hour for the main presentation and questions. Sometimes presenters stay longer to answer additional questions from participants.

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About Webinars

In this virtual classroom, participants can join in a seminar led by Poynter faculty and visiting faculty. This screencast includes live audio and a slideshow presentation in which participants can post questions and respond to poll questions posed by the host.

The contested 2000 U.S. presidential election pushed the elections system into the spotlight; each election cycle since has uncovered new controversies and issues around voting, from hanging chads to long lines at polling stations and, most recently, the possibility of foreign interference.

What lessons can journalists learn from past elections? What are the benefits of building a relationship with election professionals?

Get an inside look at the complex and often confusing landscape of election administration. Find out which specific areas to study when covering state or local elections.

Webinar participants will hear advice from secretaries of state, state election directors, local election officials and practicing journalists. They'll learn about resources that are available to help them tell powerful stories about the voting process while ensuring accurate, informative content.

Words matter. Saying that a voting system was hacked, when in reality a voter registration website was scanned, is inaccurate; these are dramatically different things. In an age where getting the details right has never been more important, this webinar will explain the difference and prepare participants to produce compelling journalism that can enlighten the public and empower voters.

What Will I Learn:
  • How to make sense of the rules and laws that apply to elections
  • How voter registration actually works
  • What is required for election results to become official
  • The difference between absentee voting and voting by mail
  • A definition of "ranked choice voting" and why so many places are considering adopting it
  • The best ways to learn what is happening inside the polls on Election Day
  • Whom to contact when you have a question about an election process
  • How to address questions about security, access and integrity in elections
Who Should Take this Course:

This webinar will benefit anyone covering elections, civic engagement, government or politics, including journalists, bloggers, editors, students, and producers.

Course Instructors:

Kay Stimson

Kay Stimson is a seasoned government relations and public affairs professional, with more than 20 years of experience working with U.S. election officials and media. She spent 17+ years representing the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS), the oldest professional association for state government officials in the U.S. In this role, she oversaw communications and programming outreach to 54 state and territorial member offices, 100+ media outlets and multiple federal entities, including the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, Congress and the White house.

Tammy Patrick

Tammy Patrick is a Senior Advisor to the Elections program at the Democracy Fund, a bipartisan foundation working to ensure that our political system is able to withstand new challenges and deliver on its promise to the American people.


Democracy Fund

The Democracy Fund aspires to the highest ideals of the American republic — government of, by, and for the people. We invest in organizations working to ensure that our political system is responsive to the priorities of the American public and has the capacity to meet the greatest challenges facing our country.

Nonpartisanship is a cornerstone of the Democracy Fund’s work.

Technical Requirements:

1.4GHz Intel® Pentium® 4 or faster processor (or equivalent) for Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 8.1
512MB of RAM (1GB recommended) for Windows 7 or Windows 8
Microsoft Internet Explorer 8, 9, 10, 11; Mozilla Firefox; Google Chrome
Adobe® Flash® Player 11.2+

1.83GHz Intel Core™ Duo or faster processor
512MB of RAM (1GB recommended)
Mac OS X 10.7.4, 10.8, 10.9
Mozilla Firefox; Apple Safari; Google Chrome
Adobe Flash Player 11.2+

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