Lawrence Norden


Attorney and election policy advocate

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Lawrence Norden is a left-of-center election policy advocate and attorney who works as the senior director of elections and government policy at the Brennan Center for Justice. Norden has been a longtime commenter on election administration policy and campaign finance and is particularly well known for his research on voting machines. In addition to studying how to best protect election systems and voting machines, Norden has also argued for left-of-center election administration policies and campaign finance laws. Norden also sits on the National Task Force on Election Crises alongside many other left-of-center election policy advocates. 1 2


Lawrence Norden attended the University of Chicago for undergraduate studies followed by law school at the New York University School of Law. Following law school, he worked for the law firm of Stroock and Stroock and Lavan LLP, followed by a year working for a venture capital firm. He then worked for Hahn and Hessen LLP as a bankruptcy litigator. 3

Brennan Center for Justice

In 2005, Norden joined the staff of the Brennan Center for Justice, a left-of-center advocacy group and public interest legal center housed at the New York University Law School. Norden served as director of the group’s voting technology project, which studied voting machines in U.S. elections. He was appointed to the Ohio Secretary of State’s bipartisan election summit in 2008 and authored multiple reports regarding election accessibility and voting machine design. One notable report of Norden’s published in 2011 revealed that more than 60,000 votes were invalidated in New York due to machines allowing voters to enter multiple selections. 4 5

Since 2011, Norden has worked for the Brennan Center’s expanded “democracy program” which promotes left-leaning policy around election administration and campaign finance, particularly opposing the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. Norden also led the Brennan Center’s work promoting the New York Leadership for Accountable Government campaign supporting taxpayer funding of elections in New York. 6

Ahead of the 2020 election, Norden penned an opinion piece outlining several policy recommendations for election officials including requiring hard copy backups of poll books, and having enough provisional ballots on hand to handle a voting machine failure. Following the 2020 election, he wrote another op-ed praising the work of election officials across the country. 7 8

Ahead of the 2022 elections, Norden coauthored a report with election advocacy group Verified Voting analyzing the state of voting machines in the United States. The report was particularly critical of six states (Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, Tennessee, and Texas) that have jurisdictions that use machines that do not produce a paper audit trail. The report also found that more than 20 states utilize voting machines that are older than ten years. 9

Norden has also worked as an adjunct law professor, first teaching at the Cardozo School of Law from 2003 to 2009 and at NYU Law School since 2009. 10

National Task Force on Election Crises

Lawrence Norden also sits on The National Task Force on Election Crises, an organization that promotes left-of-center election administration policies and is also comprised of representatives from left-of-center groups including the Democracy Fund, Common Cause, and the Center for Tech and Civic Life. 11 12


  1. “Members.” National Task Force on Election Crises.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
  2. “Lawrence Norden.” Brennan Center for Justice. Accessed April 27, 2022.
  3. “Lawrence Norden.” LinkedIn profile. Accessed April 27, 2022.
  4. “Report: 60,000 New York Votes Lost Due to Poor Design in 2010.” Brennan Center for Justice. December 6, 2011. Accessed April 27, 2022.
  5. “Lawrence Norden.” LinkedIn. Accessed April 27, 2022.
  6. “Lawrence Norden.” LinkedIn. Accessed April 27, 2022.
  7. Norden, Lawrence and Ramachandran, Gowri. “Op-Ed: How to shorten voting lines for the November election.” Los Angeles Times. March 5, 2020. Accessed April 27, 2022.
  8. Norden, Lawrence and Weil, Matthew. “Election workers protected US democracy. Now, we must protect them.” CNN Opinion. June 16, 2021. Accessed April 27, 2022.
  9. “Voting Machines at Risk in 2022, a joint analysis from the Brennan Center and Verified Voting.” Verified Voting. Accessed April 27, 2022.
  10. “Lawrence Norden.” LinkedIn. Accessed April 27, 2022.
  11. Members.” National Task Force on Election Crises.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
  12. “About.” National Task Force on Election Crises.” Accessed April 27, 2022.
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