“It Takes All of Us”: A Playbook for Protecting the 2024 Election

Earlier this month, Protect Democracy’s Chris Crawford addressed the thousands of attendees at The Parliament of the World’s Religions conference in Chicago. In his speech, Chris outlined the role that Americans of different political and religious beliefs can play in building a broad coalition to protect democracy. 

At the Parliament, Protect Democracy and Interfaith America also announced a partnership to mobilize faith communities to serve their communities during the 2024 election. The Faith in Elections Playbook provides concrete, accessible ways for faith communities to take action that supports the 2024 election. 

Building a Broad Coalition to Protect Democracy 

During his speech to the Parliament, Chris discussed why Protect Democracy is reaching out to the faith community as we prepare for the 2024 election: 

At my organization, Protect Democracy, we believe that to defeat an authoritarian you have to be able to bring together a broad coalition of people who might have big major disagreements on politics and policy but who are willing to come together to prioritize the defense of democracy…

While I am a person of faith, Protect Democracy actually is not a religious organization. But we are here because we know the crucial role that faith communities play in building this type of coalition, and it’s a coalition not just to defeat one temporary strongman, it is one to build defenses to stop any future one as well…

We have learned as an interfaith community that building effective coalitions is not about minimizing our differences or watering down our beliefs — it means listening, understanding, and welcoming people to bring exactly who they are to this moment and this movement; so that together we can prevail on the most pressing of issues.

After discussing the legacy of Fannie Lou Hamer as an example of believing in both the power of faith and the necessity of institutions that represent all of us, Chris challenged the attendees to join together to defend our elections and resist authoritarianism: 

The next chapter is being written right now. And it is being written by us…

Every freedom that we enjoy — including our religious freedom — rests upon the foundation of free and fair elections and the peaceful transfer of power. Our ability to advocate for issues that we care about rests on the existence of pluralism and democracy. Even our ability to practice our faith without coercion or punishment is a fundamental freedom protected by democratic values and the rule of law.

A Resource for Communities

At the Parliament, Protect Democracy and Interfaith America shared a preview of the Faith in Elections Playbook that will launch later this fall. Organizations can pledge their support now and will receive the resource when the project formally launches one year out from the 2024 election. It will include concrete actions and how-to guides on the following ways faith-based institutions can take action: 

  • Recruit poll workers to staff the 2024 election. 
  • Share accurate information on where and how to vote. 
  • Hold meetings with local election officials. 
  • Provide food and water at polling locations with long lines. 
  • Build bridges across differences during a divisive election season. 
  • Provide a peaceful presence at polling locations. 

With over 228,000 faith-based nonprofits and 350,000 houses of worship, religious Americans have the network and ability to ensure that every community has access to the ballot and that Americans of all backgrounds ensure our election runs smoothly. 

About the Author

Chris Crawford

Policy Strategist, Free & Fair Elections

Chris Crawford is a policy strategist at Protect Democracy. His work is focused on ensuring free and fair elections and the peaceful transfer of power, including staffing the National Task Force on Election Crises and managing the Faith in Elections Playbook in partnership with Interfaith America.

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