The National Commission on Federal Election Reform

The National Commission on Federal Election Reform

In the wake of the 2000 presidential election and the intense scrutiny of the institutions of election administration that followed it, the Miller Center assembled a commission to examine the voting systems in place and recommend election reform designed to improve America's electoral system. The commission's proposed improvements to the federal, state, and local voting systems were largely adopted in the Help America Vote Act, a landmark piece of election reform legislation signed by President George W. Bush in 2002.

Honorary Co-Chairs:

  • President Gerald Ford, 38th President of the United States, 1974–1977
  • President Jimmy Carter, 39th President of the United States, 1977–1981


  • Robert H. Michel, Member, U.S. House of Representatives (R-Ill.), 1956–1994
  • Lloyd N. Cutler, White House Counsel, 1977–1981, 1994; Partner, Wilmer Cutler & Pickering

Vice Chairs:

  • Slade Gorton, U.S. Senator (D-Wash.), 1981–1987, 1989–2001; Of Counsel, Preston Gates & Ellis; Commissioner, National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States
  • Kathleen Sullivan, Dean and Professor of Law, Stanford Law School


  • Griffin B. Bell, U.S. Attorney General, 1977–1979; Senior Partner and Counsel, King and Spalding
  • Rudy Boschwitz, U.S. Senator (R-Minn.), 1978–1991; U.S. Ambassador, United Nations Commission on Human Rights
  • John C. Danforth, U.S. Senator (R-Mo.), 1976–1994; U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations
  • Christopher F. Edley, Jr., Associate Director for Economics and Government at the Office of Management and Budget (1993–1995); Special Counsel to the President (1995); Dean and Professor at Law, University of California at Berkeley; Member of U.S. Commission on Civil Rights
  • Hanna Holborn Gray, President Emeritus, University of Chicago; Harry Pratt Judson Distinguished Service Professor Emerita of History, University of Chicago
  • Colleen C. McAndrews, Partner, Bell, McAndrews, Hiltachk & Davidian
  • Daniel Patrick Moynihan, U.S. Senator (D-N.Y.), 1977–2000
  • Leon Panetta, White House Chief of Staff, 1994–1997; Founder and Director, Leon and Sylvia Panetta Institute for Public Policy, California State University
  • Deval L. Patrick, Executive Vice President and General Counsel, The Coca-Cola Company; Governor-elect of Massachusetts (D), 2006
  • Diane Ravitch, Assistant Secretary of Education (1991–1993); Historian of American Education and Research Professor of Education, New York University
  • Bill Richardson, Secretary of the Department of Energy, 1998–2001; U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, 1997–1998; Governor of New Mexico (D), 2003–present
  • John Seigenthaler, Editor, Publisher, CEO, and Chairman Emeritus, The Tennesean; Founder of First Amendment Center at Vanderbilt University
  • Michael Steele, Chairman, Maryland Republican Party; Lieutenant Governor of Maryland, 2003-present

Commission Director: Philip D. Zelikow, Director of the Miller Center, 1998–2005