On Democracy and Authoritarianism

The Present State of American Affairs

In our pamphlet On Democracy and Authoritarianism: The Present State of American AffairsProtect Democracy has taken stock of what we’ve built since our founding in late 2016 to address the urgent threats to the safety of our democracy and to ensure we hand a healthy system of self-government to the next generation

What the Experts Are Saying About Protect Democracy 

I’m hard pressed to think of another organization that formed as accurate and comprehensive a prognosis of the dangers facing our democracy as early as Protect Democracy did, and then executed on it to have as much impact as they did. They are an absolutely essential institution in the broader fight for democracy.

Joe Goldman, President, Democracy FUND

Protect Democracy has been a trusted and valuable partner to me as we’ve confronted unprecedented challenges over the past few years. I look forward to working closely with them as we seek to strengthen our democracy and our nation.

Representative Adam Schiff, D-CA

As has been noted in the pages of The Atlantic, the global rise of authoritarianism has in many ways been a war on women and the feminist gains of the past several decades. So when Protect Democracy was just a concept on paper in late 2016, our network placed a bet on its importance and ability to deliver, and it turned out to be one of the best bets we’ve ever placed. We could not be prouder to be one of Protect Democracy’s founding donors.

Donna Hall, President and CEO, Women Donors Network

I have worked with hundreds of nonprofits and I’ve never seen a better-run organization than Protect Democracy. In fact, part of the reason I sit on Protect Democracy’s board is so that I can learn from the organization’s approach and share those lessons with others. From the rigor of Protect Democracy’s hiring practices to the way the organization invests in growing its people to its excellence in execution to its commitment to constant improvement and the transparency and integrity of its culture: Protect Democracy is as effective an organization as you’ll find in any sector.

Jerry Hauser, Founder of The Management Center

Protect Democracy really amplifies the organizing on the ground. Working with them is like two pieces to a puzzle that complement each other. They take the litigation side of our organizing work and it’s another pressure point towards making a stronger democracy.

Angela Lang, Executive Director, Black Leaders Organizing for Communities

Protect Democracy fields a team of energetic and creative advocates who are committed to promoting democracy and the rule of law at a time when both are under assault from malign forces.

Michael Chertoff, Chairman of the Chertoff Group and Second United States Secretary of Homeland Security

Protect Democracy is the most important guard-dog of democracy’s red lines.

Aziz Huq, Frank and Bernice J. Greenberg Professor of Law, University of Chicago Law School

They are innovative, imaginative, energetic, and extremely effective.

Ben Wittes, Lawfare Editor-In-Chief

In a democracy, the people are the ultimate check on power. Protect Democracy’s central argument is that institutions don’t protect themselves; people have to be activated to use the tools the system provides. In a timely metaphor, the group’s leaders compare authoritarianism to a virus sweeping the globe: first you treat the patient by activating the body’s immune system to fight off the illness; over time, you formulate a vaccine to provide immunity in the future.

Molly Ball, National Political Correspondent, Time Magazine

These folks are worth their weight in gold.

Jennifer Rubin, Washington Post columnist